Re: “Tradition defines rugby team” (Sept. 24). I was initially excited to see that the News decided to publish an article about rugby, as it is an oft-underappreciated sport, particularly on campus. Imagine my surprise when I found out that to the News, “rugby” means exclusively “men’s rugby.” It may have escaped the paper’s notice, but Yale also has a women’s rugby team.
Founded in 1978, the Yale Women’s Rugby Football Club has fielded women ruggers at the University for over 30 years, finding footing less than a decade after the first women entered the undergraduate class. We compete in the highest level of collegiate rugby in the country. We share the exact same rules and regulations, “hard tackle[s] and long passes,” grisly injuries, traditions and even the same pitch as the men’s team. While we share many of our traditions with the men’s team, we also have our own unique history, culture, quirky attire and fiery spirit. Just last year at Harvard-Yale we held a 30th anniversary reunion that boasted dozens of women from every decade of YWRFC, and for spring break we went on a team tour to Trinidad.
I hope that in the future the paper will at the very least acknowledge the thriving women’s rugby community at Yale, even if it chooses not to spotlight the tremendous women that step on the pitch to play the powerful and incredibly fun game that is rugby.
The writer, a 2009 graduate of Davenport College, is an alumna of the Yale Women’s Rugby Football Club and currently a player on the Washington, D.C., Furies women’s rugby football club.