Pulborough under-18 girls are crowned champions of England again

Pulborough under-18 girls have won the RFU National Cup
Pulborough under-18 girls have won the RFU National Cup

Pulborough under-18 girls have shown once again they are at the pinnacle of rugby by being crowned the champions of England.

The young team have secured the RFU U18 National Cup for the second successive season.

It is the third time in four years that the formidable Freelands outfit have won the competition; previously achieving glory in the 2015-16 season as well.

For their latest triumph they beat a strong Mansfield opponent 25-15 in a tense final held at Premiership side Worcester’s Six Ways Stadium at the start of the month.

The match was played in front of a large crowd swelled by Pulborough supporters including chairman Alan Nye.

Despite their rich history in the competition, this proved the toughest encounter.

Losing 10-5 at half-time, Pulborough had to dig deep but came back in the second half to score three tries whereas Mansfield put down just one - which meant the ‘Borough girls completed a superb turnaround to secure the win.

Head of the ladies and girls’ section at Pulborough, Keith Woodcock, said: “The entire Pulborough club family are immensely proud of the squad of some 34 girls who have trained hard all year.

“They were greeted back at their home club by a jubilant crowd who formed a guard of honour as they got off the bus, weary, but still smiling at what they had achieved 24 hours earlier.

“Having seen some of these girls since they were under-13s it is amazing how they have matured into skilled and tough rugby players, capable of displaying tremendous fighting team spirit when they were 10-0 in the first half of the final to finally win the day”.

The team is coached by John Breach, father of Red Rose player Jess Breach - herself a former Pulborough player, Kelly Russell and Keith Beckley and managed by Steve Summers.

They added: “We couldn’t be more proud of every single one of the girls, not just the 22 who contested the final on the day, but also the other 10 plus members of the under-18 squad who played their part in getting the team to the final.”