Have you signed up to play adult tag rugby this summer? Register your team now through work colleagues or friends! Great new sport, lots of fun, keep fit, improve your skills, meet new people and try something different this summer. Limited places available in tag rugby leagues. Enter a team NOW! www.tagrugby.com
Tag Rugby, the hottest mixed-gender sporting activity to be introduced to Ireland is back again this summer and is expected to reach new heights as participant numbers soar to an amazing 3,500 for this year's short season beginning at the end of May and running until July. With a 30% increase of tag players from last year, it is officially the fastest growing adult team summer sport in Ireland. The official website for the 2003 series is now live www.tagrugby.com and very much active as players seek teams and teams seek players.
LIMERICK, Garryowen FC, Dooradoyle.Wednesday & Thursday nightsLeagues: Men's Super League Mixed/Social League
CORK, Highfield RFC, BishopstownThursday nightsLeague: Mixed/Social League
ULSTER, Lisburn RFC, Co AntrimThursday nightsLeagues: Men's Super League Mixed/Social League
Blackrock Coll RFCSt. Mary's Coll RFCWednesday & Thursday nightsLeagues: Men's Super League Mixed/Social League Veteran's +35 League Women's Super League
Managed by the Irish Tag Rugby Association (ITRA) under the auspices of the IRFU, there is a Mixed Social League for guys and girls. In the mixed team, there are four men and three women on a 7-a-side team. And a Men's Super League for current rugby players from U20's, Junior and Senior adult rugby teams.
Eddie Wigglesworth, director in the IRFU, welcomes the 2003 season as providing a real breakthrough in the sport's popularity. "The response has been tremendous with numbers growing daily," he says. "Two years ago we launched the series and word of mouth has generated its initial popularity. Anyone who participates can feel the buzz."
Catherine Rossiter, referee, team leader and part time employee of ITRA, says there are many stories about why people are picked. "The best story I heard is a team leader who chose a player who worked for a brewery. The team's practice sessions were subsequently subsidised by free beer afterwards!"
Each game lasts for 20 minutes a side. The rules are strict. A hooter goes for play to begin and each team lines up. The hooter calls half time and full time for each match. Afterwards the teams use the dressing rooms and often the club will put on a barbeque and social activities to unwind.
"Tag Rugby is popular largely due to its non-contact nature," explains tag pioneer Simon Bewley, who first introduced the game to Ireland: "Each player wears a Velcro belt with two tags. Tackling is achieved through the removal of the Velcro 'tag'. In the mixed teams, men score one point per try and women three - and so there is a strong incentive to encourage women to go over the line."
ITRA supplies all equipment for the teams on the night but there is the option to purchase individual belts off the official website. "People want to practice and find that having the equipment makes this easier," says Bewley.
Registration for a team costs €420 plus vat, which works out at €4.50 per night for each player. ITRA Referees, parking, changing, socialising facilities are provided. With league fixtures and results posted on the website each week. The All Ireland playoffs are held in St Mary's RFC, Dublin on Saturday, 26th May. Last year 36 teams from across Ireland took part in the finals.
Interested tag players can contact Simon Bewley on 086-2269048 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: www.tagrugby.com