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Four Carlisle Cougars ladies rugby players will represent the North East of England in the regional final next Sunday in Derby against the South West of England.
Unfortunately Yorkshire were unable to raise a team for the North East’s last pool game on Sunday due to injuries sustained during the competition. On paper the North East were the stronger team, but the players were still disappointed not to be able to play the fixture.
Carlisle has been represented in the North East for the last three years, and for both of the last two years they have made the third/fourth team play-off. Lucy Meadley, the Cougars captain, is the only player to have been selected for three seasons. She plays prop forward. This year she is joined by Rosie Tyson (second row), Lisa Ritchie (Fly half) and Holly Freestone (centre). Hannah Sherlock who plays her rugby at Team Northumbria since leaving the Cougars two seasons ago is also from Carlisle and joins Holly in the centres.
Carlisle Cougars chair Katie Wilson said “It is fantastic the North East have made the final this year. There are several ladies teams in the North East; to have five of the squad of 30 selected from Carlisle shows how committed our players are. They have travelled over to train in the North East, and to fixtures in Newark and Huddersfield. They deserve the place in a place in the final”.
Next season the Rugby Football Union for Women (RFUW) are changing the player pathway. Regional rugby will be replaced by the more traditional County and Divisional rugby. The North East team have the opportunity to win the last regional title on Sunday.