Women showed their flair in passing, kicking and counter-attacking at the third annual Women’s Heritage Rugby Tournament in Langa on 28 and 29 September 2013. The KwaZakhele (Kwaru) team from Port Elizabeth showed its continued dominance by winning the tournament for the third consecutive year.
The tournament was hosted by Western Province (WP) Rugby to celebrate heritage and women’s excellence in sport, with support from the Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport (DCAS) and the City of Cape Town. Twelve clubs from communities and universities in Western and Eastern Cape participated in the event. Six school teams took to the field on the second day, which focused on the development of women’s rugby.
WP Rugby has been busy all year running various women’s rugby coaching clinics, capacity-building workshops and development tournaments in Cape Town. These programmes are honing and developing the skills of local coaches, referees, players and administrators.
Mr Samuel Mahlatsi of WP Rugby said the tournament achieved its aim of bringing different cultures together, with an emphasis on women’s sport. “Many clubs are already successfully competing in our women’s league. Women’s rugby is growing in our province and in the townships.”
According to Mr Alfred Msutukewana of City of Cape Town, the tournament serves to build the capacity of women to develop and uplift themselves in one of South Africa’s biggest sporting codes. “The partners are committed to promoting rugby among young women in Cape Town and will continue to support them to grow in the game.”
The players enjoyed playing the game they love. University of Stellenbosch (Maties) captain Chantel Sieckers said the tournament is a great investment in putting women’s rugby on the map. “We were unfortunate to have not won the trophy, but we had fun and will hopefully bounce back more strongly next year.”
The tournament succeeded in taking women’s rugby to greater heights. It empowered players and spectators to take pride in their heritage and to support women to develop their potential as rugby players.