International Women's Day: Cartha Queen's Park RFC
Over in the west of Scotland, Cartha Queen’s Park have reached a pioneering milestone in the realm of women’s rugby, having officially established a Women’s 2ndXV, making them the only club in generations to have two women’s sides as part of the Scottish Rugby competitive league structure.
Speaking to Scottish Rugby about the journey to creating this new team, Cartha QP’s Women’s 2XV Head Coach, Kirsty Lawie said: “Things have progressed for Cartha Women rapidly in the last couple of years.
“Just a few seasons ago we struggled to field a full first XV. We worked hard to promote opportunities for girls and women to get involved in rugby through social media and traditional media, and soon enough our numbers began to grow.
“By last summer we had over 60 women training every week, and that was when we approached Scottish Rugby to say, ‘we think we can do this, could our second team be added to a league?’.
“We were added into the Tennent’s (Women’s) West League, but unfortunately because of Covid-19 we haven’t had a chance to play yet.”
Kirsty also credits support from the club’s committee and the inclusive environment within the wider club for the women’s development.
“The club has a real family feel to it, and we do a good job as a collective to welcome new people in whatever capacity they want to be involved, and I think because of that anyone who joins instantly feels at home, and players want to stick around.” Kirsty Lawie
Although Cartha seconds have yet to make their debut, they remain hopeful to re-enter the competitive league in the near future. It is also hoped at that stage, the second team can act as a first step for girls transitioning from youth to senior rugby when they are ready.
Scottish Rugby’s Regional Director for the Glasgow North region, Peter Burgon said: “The establishment of a competitive second XV is a huge achievement for any club, but Cartha QP progress in developing a second women’s team is particularly impressive. I’d like to congratulate the club on this impressive milestone.
“It is a testament not only to the hard work of the club, but of the wider work being done across the country to promote and engage women and girls in the sport. I look forward to watching Cartha Women’s 2nd XV make their competitive debut when it is safe to do so.”