Jersey team win Twickenham touch21/05/2014
A Jersey rugby team lifted silverware at Twickenham after winning a touch competition for supporters of clubs in the RFU Championship.
The event was organised by Championship sponsors Greene King IPA, with representatives from the division's 12 clubs plus three guest sides taking part. The mixed Jersey squad was chosen by Rena Nelson, Chairperson of Jersey Touch, and included experienced touch practitioners such as Lauren Lowe and Natasha Eastwood, JRFC Academy graduates Charles Hubert and Harry Cochrane, and 1st XV player James Voss, making his final appearance in a Jersey shirt before his move to Gloucester and Hartpury College.
The Jersey squad, one of only two not to field an all-male line-up, quickly gelled as a unit with the rugby players picking up touch tactics from those more experienced in the non-contact version of the game. This helped Jersey to group stage wins over Ealing Trailfinders (4-0), Bedford (3-0) and Nottingham; the latter side featured some England representative touch players in their ranks but were beaten 3-0 by the Island side. The final group match was the toughest, but Cornish Pirates were beaten 2-0 and Jersey had progressed to the knock-out stages.
Guest side Trojans were the semi-final opponents and did manage to breach the Jersey defence for the first time before being beaten 3-1. Time had become a concern at this point, with captain Nelson and some other players due to leave Twickenham to travel back to Gatwick Airport. However there was just time for the skipper to open the scoring against Colchester and pave the way for a final victory.
"We left it as late as we could, but had to leave before the end of the match, and only got confirmation in the taxi via a text message that we'd gone on to win 4-0," Nelson said. "The whole squad weren't able to be there to lift the trophy, but it was an amazing day and getting the chance to play at Twickenham was a fantastic experience."
Jersey squad: Harry Cochrane, Tom Devereaux, Ellie Duley, Natasha Eastwood, John Hood, Charles Hubert, Lauren Lowe, Rena Nelson, Luke Profke, James Voss.