With the addition of Malone RFC to its club venues, Bud Light Tag in Ulster saw 2010 off to a flying start with a record number of teams now playing in the province. Malone's Venue Manager, Claire McAteer describes how the first nights went there.
Last week saw Bud Light Tag Rugby kick off in Ulster. 76 teams taking part means this is the largest number to date in the province with an additional venue also.
With popularity growing there are 16 teams in each the B&C leagues on a Wednesday night, these have been divided into two groups of 8 for the purposes of the competition.
Both night saw a combination of new and old teams gathering at Malone RFC. The match of the night had to be last year's social B cup final between Deep Heat and Hands Like Feet. This match took centre stage and didn't fail to impress. Hands Like Feet were victors and it really goes to show the female tries make all the difference.
There were also wins for NFU, Rucking Brilliant and newcomers CitySlickers (not to be confused with the old hand City Slickers that play on a Thurs night)
In the other B league runners up from last year's league Tagging Tigers took on Scott Wilson Wolves, the ladies on this team all have represented either their province or country in rugby union so again week 1 threw up a showcase match. Tagging Tigers proved to be too strong for the Wolves.
The Tropics took on late registers the Silver Foxes and unfortunately for the Foxes their first game in a higher league didn't end up in victory. Elsewhere in the league there were wins for The Carnivores and The Tryers.
If there was an award last season for enthusiasm and determination it would have gone to " TheCrew" (nee The Seasiders) this year they got their season off to a better start with a draw against Arthur Cox. Northern Ireland Water and Goldblatt McGuigan had narrow victories against Parity and Engeria Power Chiefs respectively. Quinn's Ladies got their season off to a winning start with a victory over BangorBlues.
Newbie's Stranmillis Stingrays were narrowly beaten by a strong PwC team and a new look Tagger Prawns team proved again girl tries are important by beating Dynamic Hips by just 3 points. The other results in the league went in favour of Wolfpack and Try Try Again.
The highly competitive social A league kicked off Thursday night at Malone RFC. With Ulster league games still in progress some of the teams were missing key players. There were two new teams in the league this year and week 1 saw them going head to head with Knipeys Knashers taking the spoils. The other victors on the night were Moose knuckles,Pumas and Transformers.
Again the growing popularity of tag has seen 16 teams entering into the B league. All games were exceptionally tight KPMG and City Slickers both won their games by only four points while Killerwatts won by three and Tubbies revenge by just one point. With games as close as this on week 1 this will be a tight league to call.
The Power Rangers moved up a league and got their season off to a winning start. The Angry Pirates must be delighted a team dropped out just days before the season started as they got a last gasp place in the league and also got their season off to winning ways.
Social C was another hotly contested league with only a few points separating each of the teams. Le Racing Club, Old Kirkonians, Too Big To Fail and The Bright Sparks all won their matches but given it was the first time out for a lot of players it is anticipated there will be a lot of teams practicing in the parks this weekend.
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The Ireland squad paid a visit to Monaghan last week and held an open training session in Monaghan RFC. We spoke to Andrew Trimble after the session which was attended by over 2,000 cheering supporters.