Getting their hands on the prized Rugby World Cup inspired the ladies’ team of Amber Valley Rugby Union Club to win their own first piece of silverware.
The ladies were pictured with the iconic Webb Ellis Cup while playing in a sevens tournament at Lincoln. And they went on to bag a trophy for finishing a creditable fourth in what was a tough, richly-contested competition.
The Webb Ellis trophy is on a 75-day tour of England to mark the final countdown to the Rugby World Cup tourney, which kicks off in this country on Friday September 18.
It is visiting host cities, team bases, community events and grassroots clubs. And after its appearance at Lincoln, it was flown to Chatsworth House at Bakewell, where Amber Valley’s U8s’ team had their photo taken with it too.
The youngsters were at Chatsworth for a mini-tag festival against eight other teams, and also had a medal presented to them by England rugby legend Neil Back (46), who won 66 caps for his country and made more than 330 appearances in a 15-year career with Leicester Tigers.
The festival featured some excellent rugby, and Amber Valley’s youngsters made history by being among the first, and very possibly the last, to play rugby on the private lawn of the lavish stately home.
The Rugby World Cup, which culminates in the final at Twickenham on Saturday October 31, is viewed as an ideal opportunity for local clubs to showcase the sport. Amber Valley spokesman Paul Reeves said: “With the World Cup now just around the corner, we are making arrangements to welcome the whole community. We continue to invite new players of any age, male or female, experienced or new to rugby, to come and participate.”