Hatfield Studios was victorious in the first ever Bragging Rights Touch Tournament held on Saturday 5 March. The 15 competing teams consisted of the UP women’s residences, which were divided into three pools. The winners of the three pools then competed among each other in a shortened round robin format.
The standard laws of touch rugby applied. The matches were played across half a rugby field and were five minutes a half, with a two minute half time. Possession of the ball could be turned over by six touches in a row, letting the ball touch the ground and passing the ball forward.
The day was played out in a friendly format, with many of the teams cheering each other on. Hatfield Studios won the overall tournament after their try difference in the pool stages separated them from Tuks Village, who finished in second place. Asterhof finished in a hard-fought third place.
The tournament was of special significance to most players as this was the first time that they had played rugby of any kind. The players started the day struggling to fully grasp the rules, but soon adapted and ended the day playing some much improved rugby.
UP women’s sevens coach Riaan van der Merwe was present to scout many of the players. The top 20 players would be handed a golden ticket and a chance to try out for the UP sevens team. The team will be touring France from 5-15 May.
Van der Merwe said, “It was very difficult to choose just 20 players,” and that “many of the players had shown remarkable improvement throughout the day.”