Category: News

New Summer Touch Rugby Draft-style Tournament

Pioneers in Inclusive Rugby, The Manchester Village Spartans RUFC, are proud to have teamed up with England Rugby and 02 Touch to launch the UK’s first Draft-Style, one-day, Summer Touch Rugby tournament on Saturday June 1st 2019 at Trafford MV RFCC – a popular Touch Rugby ground in Sale, Manchester.

Supported by England Touch, players aged 18yrs+ of any touch rugby ability can register to go along and play.  You don’t have to be in a team so you can register as individuals or in friendship groups.

This exciting, ultra-sociable and inclusive event is a first of it’s kind for the UK so whether you’re a group of Northwest Blades, a solo Midland Tiger or an 02 Touch Team from Tamworth, everyone’s welcome.

Ben Dawson, 02 Touch Rugby Lead at the Spartans explained, “The easiest way to think of a Summer Touch Rugby Draft Tournament is that it’s like fantasy Football or Fantasy Touch Rugby but it’s played out in real life.”

He continued, “When you book your ticket, we ask you a couple of basic questions about your overall Summer Touch Rugby experience. This gets anonymised and each player is given a “price” that the tournament captains then have to “pay” to assemble their dream teams. They only have set ‘budgets’ so all the captains have to spend wisely and mix their teams up with players of all abilities.”   

This, Ben says, creates really well-mixed teams and he believe will lead to a really social and fun competition where everyone gets to compete fairly for the Cup, learn from one-another and create a really friendly buzz.  He adds, “We’ll try to keep small groups of friends together so if you come down as a duo, you don’t get split up and you can have a really good day meeting new people.”

You can find more information at www.summerdraft.co.uk where you can also buy your Early Bird ticket that includes Lunch for £15pp.

Teams show support for Trans Pride Leeds

The Leeds Hunters and Manchester Village Spartans played against each this weekend for the IGR Northern League.

The teams like many in the IGR around the world, have enjoyed an inclusive sports outlet where anyone can enjoy their love of rugby in a safe space for gay, trans, bi and heterosexual men.

With prominent sports people publicly saying that transgender women competing in women’s sports is not acceptable, the Hunter’s have decided to make a point and invited our brothers at Manchester Village Spartans to take part in a world first for rugby by wearing Trans Pride laces kindly donated by LInclusive Leeds for a rugby match in support of the Hunters’ friends in the Trans Community and by inviting Natasha Handley, organiser of Trans Pride Leeds to the match as an honoured guest in support ahead of their celebrations at the end of this month. Although the flag didn’t fair well in the Yorkshire winds, we hope that these symbolise the winds of change.

The recent comments and debate in the press surrounding trans women have made the Hunters acutely aware that the road to inclusivity is far from over which is why we’ve opted to use this match to shine a light on trans issues and by openly saying that anyone and everyone is welcome to come and play rugby.

Serpents up against Bognor in Sussex

AWAY MATCH v BOGNOR III

KICK OFF 2:30pm
SUSSEX LEAGUE DIVISION FOUR WEST

Our second of six league matches in Phase 2 of this season is away against Bognor. A tough match last time, we’ll be hoping to improve the scoreline this time!

Join us at Bognor RFC and give us a big cheer. We’ll be back in Brighton in the evening at our sponsors Bar Broadway for some post match drinks.

Previous Results:
05/01/2010: Bognor 68 – 0 Sea Serpents

ABOUT US:
Brighton & Hove Sea Serpents are Sussex’s first fully inclusive rugby club, encouraging gay, bisexual, and trans guys to learn, experience and play rugby in a non judgemental atmosphere. We welcome anyone who shares our vision. Find out more by messaging our facebook page or emailing info@bhssrfc.com

We are the 2018 Bingham Cup Challenger Bowl champions, and have been voted Brighton’s Favourite Sports Group at GScene’s Golden Handbags for the past 2 years.

We are proud to be sponsored by Bar Broadway, and to be members of the Sussex RFU, the RFU and IGR – the body that encourages inclusive rugby around the world.

Westcountry Wasps Launching 13th Oct

Westcountry Wasps is a brand new rugby club getting off the ground this month in Exeter.

Saturday 13th October marks their first open day event when at 12:30pm they’ll be inviting any new players or supporters to join them at Topsham Rugby Club.

“Come and find out more about Westcountry Wasps and why some many people are joining #inclusiverugby teams up and down the country! This taster session is designed for anyone interested in becoming a founding Wasp! No experience required, just the desire to #stinglikeawasp!”

For details visit their Facebook page which you can link through to from their Team Page here.
 
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Centurions’ 1st Birthday

Chester’s largest LGBT Sports Group, the Chester Centurions RUFC celebrated its 1st birthday on 23rd September with their very first competitive league match in the new IGR UK League Championship played on Saturday 29th.

Scoring two tries and a conversion, the team that now boasts over 45 permanent members ultimately lost to Yorkshire’s experienced and powerful Leed’s Hunters.

Results

TeamTriesConversionsBPPointsOutcome
Centurions2112Loss
Hunters183Win

Brotherhood

Commenting on Facebook, Adam Prankard, PR for Centurions said, “What a great birthday for Chester Centurions RUFC. We played our first IGR International Gay Rugby league match. This was our first home game. This year has been a great year!  We have not only become team members but also a brotherhood.”

The club was established following the Spirit of IGR Summer Recruitment Campaign that sent volunteer hit squads to various Pride events across England to raise awareness of inclusive rugby and encourage members of the LGBT community and their straight allies to “Fear Less. Give Rugby a Try”.

Chester Pride on 19th August 2017 uncovered a healthy level of interest in rugby across the University city and enabled the very first open training session to take place on 23rd September 2017.

Volunteers handing out leaflets and chatting at Pride included Dan Cumblidge (then) from the Birmingham Bulls who is now the Centurions’ Club Captain and players from Liverpool Tritons and Manchester Village Spartans.

If you think your town or city could do with a new Inclusive Rugby Club, email info@inclusiverugby.com for advice.

Tritons & Typhoons play 1st match

Great start to the season and the IGR League Championships (Northern Division) with a 57-5 home win for Liverpool Tritons – Inclusive Rugby Union against Typhoons RUFC.

Both sides are making great progress at the moment and Tritons commented that they look forward to the away leg in Preston in April.

Tritons Kit is sponsored by JC Construction Limited and DLA Piper

Result here

New IGR League launches

WORLD’S 1st COMPETITIVE ANNUAL LEAGUE FOR GAY & INCLUSIVE RUGBY

A new league championship has been established for International Gay Rugby (IGR) clubs to compete against each other throughout the forthcoming Rugby Union Season 2018/19.

14 LGBT-Friendly clubs from Scotland, England and Wales will battle to be crowned, “UK IGR League Champions 2018/19” at the end of the season.

The first annual competition of its kind to exist on such a scale anywhere in the world, will be split into fixtures for northern and, separately, southern teams, to compete against each other until the end of the season.

An inaugural finals day will be hosted by Cardiff Lions RFC who will be participating in the southern fixtures. The host for future season’s play-offs will alternate between a northern and southern club each year.

Four teams trialled a ‘Gay League’ structure in 2017/18 by competing in the IGR Northern League – which saw Newcastle Ravens RUFC come out top of the table ahead of Leeds Hunters RUFC. Southern teams have previously competed against each other in “The Turing Cup” which shall be replaced by the new UK-wide championship.

This will be the first time, such a large, comprehensive championship league structure will exist for Gay & Inclusive Rugby Union teams from one region to compete against each other on an annual basis and is indicative of the phenomenal growth that gay and inclusive rugby is enjoying across the world – especially in England and the rest of the UK and Ireland.

There are now 20 IGR-affiliated clubs across the UK and Ireland eligible to participate in the new league with an estimated number of players in excess of 1500­­. Approximately 80% of members within Gay & Inclusive Rugby Union clubs identify as LGBT with 20% as straight.

Participation in the new UK league is not exclusive and clubs with multiple teams (such as Manchester Village Spartans RUFC, the world’s second-ever, 15-a-side gay Rugby Union club) will continue to play competitive rugby in local leagues such as the Halbro Northwest Intermediate League as well as the new IGR league.

Dean Bee, IGR Trustee for Europe who has established the new league commented, “Gay and Inclusive rugby has enjoyed exceptional growth in recent years with enough teams playing a good level of competitive rugby to maintain a permanent league structure across the UK.”

He continued, “We’re proud to see UK clubs joining forces to establish another first in the world of competitive Rugby Union, where Gay and Inclusive teams will be able to compete on an annual basis for the honour of being that season’s champions amongst their peers and friends in rugby.”

“Whilst there are two successful biennial, international tournaments for IGR teams to compete within, this is the first time so many teams will have a competition on their doorstep where they can build their rugby skills and confidence in a completely inclusive environment regardless of their sexuality – week in week out, through the whole rugby season.”