Novice Bird soars for Iguanas

The rugby sevens season has started and men and women’s sides kicked off in preparation for their respective international competitions at the club ground in South Sound on Saturday.

mcgrath

McGrath is adapting quickly. Photo: Ron Shillingford

There was a series of matches throughout the day. The women’s game was a high scoring affair.

Lisa Bird scored a couple of tries for the Iguanas as they beat Buccaneers 35-25. ‘This was only my second sevens match ever,’ she said. ‘I started playing 15s in October of last year, before that I’d never played. Touch rugby, yes, but not competitive rugby.

‘We were the non-eligible side. Lisa Kehoe was the only Cayman international and she made up the numbers.’

Bird doesn’t encourage people to come down and join in, she wants them to ‘come down and play!’

She’s a tall Bird from Brisbane, Australia and added: ‘It doesn’t really matter what size you are.’

The national men’s side is limbering up for the regional World Cup sevens qualifiers in the Bahamas next month.

An exceptionally young team, the nucleus is made up of the Under-19 side that won the Caribbean Championships in July and qualified for the last 24 of the World Cup U-20 qualifiers next year.

Daniel McGrath, team captain, said: ‘As far as I’m aware, this is the Caribbean Championships as well as the World Cup. The majority of the winning team will be on it as well. We’ve been incorporating our Under-20s training in the sevens so we’ll be well prepared over the next five weeks for this.

‘This is my first sevens competition. It’s a lot different compared to the 15s but I think it’s worthwhile. It needs more stamina and there are more one on one situations. As a forward, I’m not doing as much rucking or scrimmaging and more running around, but it’s quite enjoyable. I like the fast pace.’

Saturday’s mini-tournament was sponsored by Heineken. The next round of games is on September 20 and is hosted by South Africa. Tournament 3 is on September 27 and hosted by North America. Following that, on October 4, the tournament will b sponsored by Six Nations and the final one is on October 18, sponsored by ANZAC.

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