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Home > News > London & South East girls seek Street credibility
Your News London & South East girls seek Street credibility

The London & South Easts most talented young female players will join counterparts from around the country at Hartpury College in Gloucestershire this weekend (April 16-17) for the Rugby Football Union for Womens (RFUW) Divisional Festival.

The Festival brings together squads of Under-18 and U15 players from Englands four regions London & South East, Midlands, North and South West - for the chance to show the skills they have developed during the Divisional Programme in its successful inaugural season.

The London & South U18 team will play their final divisional fixture against Midlands U18 on Sunday, having previously drawn with the South West 15-15 and defeated the North 32-0, while the North and the South West complete the U18s programme.

With the four U15 squads also present to play three 20-minute matches each on Sunday it adds up to more than 200 girls sharing in the fun and positive festival atmosphere of developing their rugby.

London & South East U18s are keen to finish the programme with a win to remain unbeaten.

And with the accent on development there will be outstanding player awards for those who have contributed the most to their team and selected by England Womens head coach Gary Street.

Street and RFUW Head of Performance Nicky Ponsford will be at Hartpury alongside senior international players from the England Elite 44 squad including Maggie Alphonsi, Nolli Waterman, Sarah Hunter, Emily Scarratt and Mo Hunt who will be chatting to and advising the aspiring youngsters.

The London & South East U15s had a convincing win over the South West at Newbury last month and trained together last weekend and they will have the chance to decide what skills to practice when they arrive at Hartpury on Saturday.

Coach Simon Burgess paid tribute to the many volunteers at clubs around the regions who give girls the chance to play rugby.

Often they are the parents of talented players who give up their time for the love of the game and in doing so encourage other players and families to get involved.

The number of clubs with girls sections is growing year by year and filling in the gaps geographically so the players do not have travel so far for their rugby, said Burgess.

This is partly down to the RFU working with schools to establish girls rugby and also down to the community rugby coaches who make the contact with the clubs, who are incentivised to run a girls section as part of the Seal of Approval process.

But we never forget the people on the ground whose hard work and devotion week by week at the clubs makes sure the girls can play the game.

Englands best club players were nominated by their constituent bodies for the divisions, and that in turn is the route into the national development squads and ultimately the England Senior and Under-20 teams.

After this festival there will be 30 U18s and 30 U15s chosen to attend a training camp and a National Talent Development Programme.

The U18s will become part of the National Talent Development Group, attending a four day summer camp at Wellington College that will include skill development, team building, welfare and time management education.

They will also receive five extra one to one sessions and a player specific development plan with their Divisional Talent Development Officer in London & South Easts case the popular England Womens flanker, Alphonsi.

The U15s players will attend a three day training camp at Wellington College in August with a focus on skill development as well as nutrition and strength and conditioning education plus expectations about elite athlete behaviour.

RFUW Divisional festival, April 16-17, 2011, Hartpury College:

London & South East U18s team v Midlands U18, Sunday April 17:

Rochelle Smith (Surrey and London Irish); Robyn Harwood-Lewis (Surrey and London Irish), Marissa Lowe (Middlesex and Ealing Emeralds), Rosie Tugwell (Hampshire and Ellingham & Ringwood), Jasmine Clarke (Hampshire and Ellingham & Ringwood); Charlotte Benson (Hampshire and Ellingham & Ringwood), Serena Carter (Surrey and London Irish); Morgan Simpson (Surrey and London Irish), Lydia Beard (Kent and Aylesford Bulls), Catherine Pugh (Essex and Rochford Hundred, captain), Lisa Cockburn (Hampshire and Ellingham & Ringwood), Colette Broome (Surrey and Esher), Lucie Wood (Essex and Rochford Hundred), Maddie Lockwood (Essex and Rochford Hundred), Sam Voyle (Hertfordshire and Welwyn). Replacements: Katie Carter (Surrey and London Irish), Alice Nee (Hertfordshire and Saracens), Zoe Barber (Hampshire and Basingstoke), Millie Moore (Surrey and London Irish), Robyn Harwood-Lewis (Surrey and London Irish), Nina Crowther (Sussex and Hastings), Shira Kilgallon (Hertfordshire and Welwyn).

London & South East U15 squad: Forwards: Jessica Boyd (Surrey and London Irish), Emily Hewitt (Hampshire and Ellingham & Ringwood), Natasha McAneney (Kent and Aylesford Bulls), Heather Clegg (Sussex and South Sussex Barbarians), Faye Smale (Essex and Rochford Hundred), Harriet Austin (Hertfordshire and Hertford), Hannah Trenholm (Surrey and London Irish), Laura Tolley (Kent and Aylesford Bulls), Ella Levey (Kent and Old Alleynians), Georgina Neary (Kent and Aylesford Bulls), Sarah Bern (Surrey and London Irish), Hannah West (Hampshire and Solent Sirens). Backs: Tazmin Bricknell (Kent and Aylesford Bulls), Elena Mackay (Surrey and London Irish), Bryony Pomfret (Hertfordshire and Welwyn), Victoria Childs (Hampshire and Ellingham & Ringwood), Rebecca Pritchard (Surrey and London Irish), Rebecca Wadhams (Kent and Aylesford Bulls), Lily Dibb-Fuller (Sussex and South Sussex Barbarians), Rebecca Salmon (Hampshire and Solent Sirens), Emma Swords (Surrey and London Irish), Eleanor Boatman (Surrey and London Irish), Abigail Graham (Essex and Rochford Hundred), Georgia Howard (Eastern Counties and Colchester), Caitlin Flower (Sussex and South Sussex Barbarians), Sophie Sutherland (Surrey), Caitlin Ward (Surrey and London Irish), Amy Dickinson (Hampshire and Solent Sirens), Sydney Gregson (Hertfordshire and Letchworth), Aegean Leech (Kent and Aylesford Bulls).

RFUW Divisional Programme 2011:


February 13: South West 5 London & South East 15; Midlands 20 North 19

March 6: London & South East 19 Midlands 12; North 34 South West 22

March 20: London & South East 33 North 13, South West 19 Midlands 14.

May 1 and 8: Super 4 England trials


February 20: Midlands 5 North 12; South West 15 London & South East 15

March 20: London & South East 32 North 0; South West 31 Midlands 19.


March 13: South West 10 London & South East 27; North 0 Midlands 15.

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