Super summer of touch rugby starts in June

Players in action at an earlier touch rugby league game. The 2019 leagues kick off in June.

More than 500 players on 36 teams are set to take part in the Tradeview Markets Corporate Summer Touch Rugby League 2019, which starts in early June and runs through late August, according to organisers.

Cayman’s touch rugby, played at the South Sound Rugby Club, has three league divisions – Premier, Invitational, and Recreational. The tournament is now in its 17th year and Tradeview Markets have once again come on board for the third consecutive year as the title sponsors.

Touch rugby’s rules are simpler than more traditional forms of rugby. Organisers noted in a press release that the standard ranges across the spectrum “from highly competitive to very social so there is a level that suits everyone”.

Teams have three male and three female players on the pitch at any one time. The basic principles are simple – run forwards, pass backwards and each team attempts to advance the ball up the field to score a touchdown. If you have the ball and get ‘touched’, you have to stop, and then start the next phase. You get six phases or ‘touches’, and if a touchdown is not scored, then the ball gets turned over and the opposition have a go.

This year, the Premier Division has been stripped down to five teams. These are the elite players, some of whom have won the US Touch Nationals Championships in recent years and some Cayman players have even represented the US National Touch team.

Delta, champions for the last two years, will be looking to make it three in a row but will face stiff opposition from the other Premier League teams.

Teams competing in the Premier Division are Delta, SteppingStones, FFP, Island Air and Genesis Trust & Corporate Services Ltd.

The Invitational Division is a standard just below that of the Premier League but this will be a tough division full of players that like to throw the ball around and score tries. Some teams, such as Heineken, have come down from the Premier League and others, such as the Under 15s team stacked with the next generation of Cayman developing rugby players, will endeavour to make their mark in a challenging division where the standard is pretty even from top to bottom. Maples Group 1 were last years champions – will they do it again?

Fifteen teams will compete in the Invitational Division. They are Maples Group 1, Harmonic, Grant Thornton 1, Cayman U13s, Titan Development U15s, Walkers, Heineken, Deloitte, KPMG 1, Estera, DART, MUFG Investor Services, Island Heritage, PWC and Ogier.

The Recreational Division is for those teams that are relatively inexperienced or prefer to take the sport less seriously. It is the perfect opportunity for those teams with new players to learn the ropes without being overwhelmed by those elite touch athletes that dominate the Premier Division. Watch out for the junior rugby teams who will pit their wits against their adult opposition. They may be young but that doesn’t mean they’re not experienced players as some of these kids have been playing since they were 4 years old.

The 16 teams competing in the Recreational Division are IT Outsource, Maples Group 2, Cayman Junior Trust U11’s, Mourant, Kensington Management Group, Harneys, Rawlinson & Hunter, Collas Crill, Grand Thornton 2, Queensgate, CML-NOVA, AON, KPMG 2, GCM, DMS and Appleby.

If you do not have a team and are interested in playing, contact [email protected]

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