County joy for Barney girls
FOR the second year running Gatorz players from Barnard Castle RUFC have been selected for the Durham County U15 Girls team.
The Gatorz have been able to field a full team of 15 girls for many matches this season, and the development of the whole team enabled the coaches to put forward a full complement of eight nominations for county selection.
All eight nominated players were subsequently invited to attend the selection day. Following a Sunday afternoon of intense training exercises, overseen by Durham County RFU coaches in early February, four Barney U15 girls were then selected to train and play for the County this season.
Staindrop Academy year 9 pupil Charlotte Hewick- Crawford was joined by Teesdale School year 9 girl Charlotte Page and year 10s Alisha and Tia Bell.
Castle officials say Alisha and Tia, having both made County selection last season, have built on their experience to become true leaders on both the training ground and field of play.
They are keen to progress within the game, and have already been mentioned as possible candidates for the RFU’s Centre of Excellence programme. The two Charlottes have achieved County selection as two of only nine year 9 pupils to make it through this season, an accolade they are rightly proud of. What makes this even more impressive in the case of Charlotte Hewick-Crawford is that this is her first season playing rugby.
Her incredible turn of speed and seeming lack of fear gained her the player of the day award at the recent county fixture against Northumberland and Cumbria.
Barnard Castle RUFC U15 manager Lewis Wigham said: “All the girls in our U15 squad have shown great determination and enthusiasm this season, to develop their game and come together as a team to be reckoned with.
“Of course there have been ups and downs, with bumps along the road.
“What marks them out as a team we are proud of is how they responded to the core principles of rugby – teamwork, respect, enjoyment, discipline and sportsmanship.
“The four girls making county selection is just reward for their developing skills, maturity and approach to the game, which all at Barnard Castle Rugby Club are proud to support and be part of.”