Collyer’s Women’s Rugby reached the finals day at the Rosslyn Park National Schools Sevens last week, the college’s best performance. The women’s under 18s tournament comprised 66 teams from all over the UK and abroad. Collyer’s defeated Hurst, Wellington, and Collegiate. On finals day, Collyer’s then drew with Kings College Taunton, but lost out to Jeremiah English Speaking School, and eventual tournament winners Cardinal Newman.
Collyer’s Head of Rugby, Emma Cooper, who coached the team at the tournament, was delighted: “I am extremely proud of all the work the athletes have put in both at college and at their clubs this season. The girls have top quality coaching from us here, and through our community partnership with Horsham RUFC, where the majority of our girls play, they are supported in their goals.
“It is fantastic to see so many female athletes excelling in the sport and gaining the recognition they deserve in tournaments like this.
“Rosslyn Park is a very special event in the rugby calendar, and one which all rugby coaches highlight as soon as the dates are released. It was amazing to see double the amount of U18 girls teams this year compared to last, and it was also the first ever year for U14 girls to compete.”
The Collyer’s squad comprises: Freya Bell (captain), Graceanna Clancy, Abbie Corrall, Izzy Dunn; Ellie Eddis, Evie Guy, Alina Hillicks, Trudie Jones; Macy Lawes, Khianna Moreno-Melgar, Georgia Pearce; Millie Smith and Georgia Stone.
Captain Freya Bell said: “It was an excellent experience to play against colleges from all around England, as well as teams from Wales and Dubai. These high level teams were a big test, and pushed us to play at our full potential.”
Collyer’s Head of Sports Academy, John Burroughs said: “Huge congratulations to the team for reaching the finals day at this famous tournament. The opposition represented some of the strongest under 18 sides in the country.
“I could not be happier with the group. In key moments they produced the technical ability and intensity required for success at this level.”
Emma Cooper added: “Head Coach Tyrone Matthews has done a fantastic job over the past four seasons with the athletes, and I would personally like to thank him, and wish him the best as he moves on from us at the end of this season.”
Collyer’s Deputy Principal, Steve Martell said: “Some of the games were professionally broadcast live on YouTube, so back in Horsham, family, students, and staff cheered on the Collyer’s team when they played on the main pitch against Kings College, Taunton.
“In horrible, wet conditions we were strong in the tackle and still managed to play heads-up, expansive rugby.”
“Emma and Tyrone are outstanding coaches, and these players are an absolute credit to the Collyer’s community.”
Collyer’s Vice Principal (Pastoral) Andrea John said: ““Well played! Collyer’s sport continues to go from strength to strength.”