For the first time ever a South African under 20 women’s team is being assembled as part of their plans ahead of the next Women’s Rugby World Cup in 2010.
The IRB reports that Women’s rugby in South Africa continues to grow and to facilitate this development the first ever national Under 20 squad will assemble in East London this weekend, not only to prepare to face their USA counterparts but also to look further ahead to the next Women’s Rugby World Cup.
South Africa made their debut on the Women’s Rugby World Cup stage two years ago in Canada, finishing bottom of the standings after losses to Australia, England, Ireland, Samoa and Kazakhstan and are hungry to improve that performance at the 2010 event.
“The purpose of assembling an Under 20 team is to build up towards the next Women’s Rugby World Cup in 2010,” explained Mahlubi Puzi, the South Africa Rugby Union Manager for Women’s Rugby Development.
“As this team will form the nucleus of our 2010 team, it is crucial that we expose them to the demands of high performance sport. They need to be better prepared mentally, physically and technically.”
The squad will be trimmed to 22 players at the end of this three-day camp with the two matches against the USA Under 20 Women’s team taking place in Nelspruit on 21 and 28 June, either side of the tourists’ facing a Mpumalanga Invitation team in a midweek encounter.
“Women’s rugby is growing steadily in the country, with most growth recorded in the rural areas. To sustain the code, we are looking at increasing the number of players in existing clubs, as opposed to establishing more clubs that lack the necessary depth,” added Puzi.
South Africa U20 Women’s Squad:
Onicca Ramaredi Moaga (Blue Bulls), She-ull Naude (Boland), Jalean De Wee (Boland), Portia Scott Boland (Boland), Portia Jonga (Border), Zenay Jordaan (Eastern Province), Matshidisa Bojozi (Falcons), Nelia Horne (Falcons), Michelle Kona (Free State), Cherne Roberts (Free State), Boipelo Nakanyane (Free State), Belinda Etie (Free State), Thakane Ntihafu (Free State), Lindiwe Masole (Griffons), Vuyiswa Desiree Khatha (Griffons), Maserame (Tiny) Bankiese (Griffons), Nomzano Ngcamu (KZN), Aimee Barrett (KZN), Zinhle Ndawonde (KZN), Monica Bulane (Leopards), Stompi Shabangu (Golden Lions), Allucia Mathebula (Pumas), Claudia Davids (Western Province), Celeste April (Western Province), Elaine Adams (Western Province).