Three seasons in, excited for more

Back for 2023 . . . The Big River Country girls in a group photo last Friday. PHOTO: KAY MERRETT
On the run . . . Big River Country women’s team player Isla Pringle
breaks past tackles during her team’s match against Alhambra-Union
in Milton during their first year as a team. PHOTO: JOHN COSGROVE

The Big River Country (BRC) women’s rugby team is in their third season as an established team in the Otago Premier Women’s Grade, and appointed captain Tegan Hollows explains her excitement for the year.

‘‘From an idea that started out as a bunch of girls missing out on playing rugby because nothing was available in South Otago, we’ve come very far as an established team,’’ Hollows said.

‘‘When we first started suggesting the idea of getting a team together there was a good amount of interest because the girls wanted to play rugby for their home town so we just went for it and it really paid off.’’

Last year the BRC team placed second, and Hollows said their biggest high of the season was hosting the final at home.

‘‘We qualified top of the table, so we got to play at Clutha Valley and the amount of supporters we had was incredible! Supporters dressed up in red and blue and there was balloons everywhere. We ran out to the bagpipes and the crowd was incredible. It was an absolutely amazing experience and we were overwhelmed by the support,’’ she said.

‘‘We really wish we could have won it for all the supporters and sponsors but we are still so proud of how much we accomplished that season, and we’re looking to smash the competition and do the best we can this year.

‘‘It’s incredible to see the community support that has been given to our team. We have had unreal crowds at all of our home games, and we’ve been so lucky with the amount of sponsors that have helped us to continue going for three whole years. We are always looking for more supporters and sponsors, and we love playing in front of a big crowd.’’

This year the BRC team are excited to go up against all of their competition, and particularly enjoy playing against the Waitaki Wahine.

‘‘I think when we first started out, the other teams took us pretty lightly and didn’t realise just how competitive we could be, so we’ve really gained some confidence over the years,’’ Hollows said.

‘‘We have an amazing team culture that didn’t take long to create at all. We train and play hard for each other but are also very social after trainings and games. The bond here is pretty special.

‘‘Being with a group of girls who are just as passionate as I am about the game but can also have a laugh and remain positive throughout anything is something I love about BRC.’’

Keep an eye out for when and where the girls are playing, and come along to support their third season! Go BRC!

Gotcha . . . University’s winger Jay’lee Nouata getting tackled by Big River Country‘s
winger Abbey Cochrane during their teams match under lights in Dunedin in a previous
Scoring . . . Crossing the line during a previous years’ game was
Big River Country women’s team member Isla Pringle. PHOTO:
Scrum it out . . . The Big River Country girls prepare for a scrum against Pioneer
last Friday, who they beat 32-0 in Gore. PHOTO: KAY MERRETT