a win for the lionessesSun 16 Mar

Tewkesbury Ladies 7 Rugby Lionesses 39


It seemed to do nothing but good for most of the squad to be able to travel together to the game in a minibus thanks to the Rugby club’s generosity because this was as strong a team performance as we have seen.

It became obvious late on in the game that this Tewkesbury team could play a bit which made clearer how well the Lionesses must have been playing through the majority of the game to keep them closed down and scoreless.

Rugby began brightly with a fluent and well supported attack and this led to the opening score when Tat Cawte saw the space to touch down on 3 minutes.

Tewkesbury looked to hit back straightaway. They were stopped in their tracks by fine tackles from Gemma Booker and Sophie Placket-Smith but the play remained in the Rugby half for an extended period before a lengthy delay for a home player injury.

The Lionesses again needed their whole team to tackle strongly to resist a sustained Tewkesbury attack and the benefit of the efforts of the likes of Becky Sadler, Lou Kowalewska Fry and others was seen immediately afterwards when Sophie Placket-Smith weaved her way through the home team from distance to race home to score.

Sophi Kowalewska Fry was kicking for the team today in the absence of Kerry Jackson and her conversion gave the Lionesses a good lead at 0-12 with half an hour played. Sophi was also very prominent in her role among the forwards in defence and attack in a very impressive display.

A fine move with the swift and sure passing the Lionesses can produce when they concentrate enable Emily Stafford to continue the rich seam of try scoring this season by the Rugby wingers.

Sophi Kowalewska Fry’s run and kick ahead brought the Lionesses a fourth try from scrum half Hollie Adams. The conversion kick unluckily hit the bar but Rugby had a solid half time lead at 0-22.

The third quarter was a tough affair with neither side able to break the shackles of strong defence and committed tackling although Tewkesbury’s best runner was only foiled by a try-saving tackle from Sophie Placket-Smith.

Although it was Tewkesbury who usually had a player left on the ground after rucks, the Lionesses did suffer some disabling injuries themselves with Kimmie Umney and Jenn Brady both coming off the bench only to have their contributions curtailed.

The first try of the second half again went to the Lionesses following a great charge down from flanker Sian Harrison that allowed scrum half Natalie Morris to follow up and touch down for 0-27 going into the last quarter

With the next-door abbey bells now ringing out, Tewkesbury responded by finally getting the converted try they had increasingly threatened to score.

With the home side showing their frustration with the tight grip the Lionesses had on the game by resorting to shirt tugging and a few choice words, Rugby rubbed in their superiority with two more tries, one from Emily Stafford from a good cross-field move and the other from fly half Hollie Adams after a run from Sophi Kowalewska Fry who then added the conversion to complete the scoring and round off an excellent team performance from the high-riding Lionesses.

Rugby Lionesses: V Boikovs, S Placket-Smith, M Ponter, G Booker, E Stafford, H Adams, L Kowalewska Fry, L Noakes, F Hibberd, B Morris, S Kowalewska Fry, T Cawte, S Harrison, B Sadler. Reps: J Brady, J Maher, A Spall, L Withers, S Amor

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