Rugby Europe Women’s Trophy 2018: final results
The Swiss women’s 7s national team showed a mixed performance at this year’s European Championship and takes home the 7th place overall, which represents an overall improvement from last year’s placement (8th place overall).
Our women’s sevens national team played in the RE Women’s Trophy over two weekends. As every year, the European 7s Championships bear surprises in terms of the level of the opposing teams: 7s rugby is a fast game, and the presence or absence of one or two key players can make a huge difference in a team’s overall performance. Depending on the work which happens in the other countries, it is impossible to predict performances in advance.
The players came out of an intense preparation programme which took place throughout the whole season and were keen to put their game on the pitch from the start. This year saw 4 players make their debut for the swiss team (Laura Chacal / RC Fribourg, Géraldine Fontana / GC Zurich, Claudia Gardeta / RC Albaladéjo, Nina Gerber / RC Bern).
First leg: 23.-24.06.2018 / Dnipro (Ukraine)
The previous’ year’s placement decided the seeding for the first leg of the tournament, where the team faced our long-time rivals (Czech Republic), the newly descended Netherlands, and the newly promoted Norvegians from the north.The start against the Czech team was strong and convincing, until a serious injury saw Switzerland lose strong-performing first-timer Laure Chacal with a broken ankle in the 10th minute. This incident led to a long injury-break in the middle of the second half, and the team had difficulties to fully get back in the game for the remaining 4 minutes. Nevertheless, the Swiss beat the Czech in 7s rugby for the first time in multiple years.
The second game against the Netherlands was a difficult one, with the young dutch team being able to use the space and their speed against the swiss to take home the win. They would later go on and win this first leg convincingly. The third and last pool-game against the Norvegians was an important win which led the Swiss to qualify for the quarter-finals.
Our opponent in this crucial game on Sunday morning was the home-team Ukraine, who hadn’t had their best day on Saturday, but clearly did some work overnight: They came out strong in front of the home-crowd and secured the win (to later go on to come 2nd against the Dutch). Switzerland was therefore going for 5th place, put on a strong game against the second game (again against the Norvegians) to make their way to the 5th / 6th playoff against Hungary, another long-time rival whom we’d met many times before on the pitch. The Hungarians were able to secure the 5th place with their big fighting spirit, which led Switzerland to an interim 6th placement before the 2nd leg to follow in 2 weeks’ time.
CZE 14 -21 SUI
NED 54 -0 SUI
SUI 22 -14 NOR
SUI 0 -39 UKR
NOR 5 -27 SUI
SUI 7 -27 HUN
Ranking: 6th place
Second leg: 07-08.07.2018 / Szeged (Hungary)
Since 2015, the 7s European’s Women’s Trophy is being played over 2 weekends, paying respect to the character of the game and requiring teams to confirm their performance multiple times in order to earn a title. The seeding for the second tournament was based on the results from the first round and saw us in a very familiar pool: Netherlands, Norway and - a new opponent - the last placed Latvia from the first round.
With a slightly different line-up from the first round (2 changes), the swiss team was confident going up against the Norvegians for the second game of the day on Saturday, a team we’d met twice in Dnipro and we’d beaten twice before. This time however, the vikings from the north found the swiss weaknesses and managed to score 3 tries off swiss mistakes, which saw them take the win. A difficult start, but no reason to let the heads down for the swiss team, who came back strong against Latvia for their second game of the day. The third and last pool game saw Switzerland up agains the strong Dutch again, who had already shown that they were a level above the rest of this year’s Trophy in Dnipro - nevertheless, our result this time around saw them score less points than in the first round.
These pool results saw Switzerland take the 3rd place in our pool, which - according to the tournament format - left it up to maths to decide whether this could still result in a quarter finals qualification. Unluckily, the swiss had the worst point difference and would play for the challenge trophy on the Sunday. They digested these news on Saturday night and came back with a strong finish of this year’s Championship and put two strong wins on the pitch, including the 9th/10th playoff against Israel (it isn’t a EC unless Switzerland plays Israel, an annual tradition by now).
SUI 12 -17 NOR
SUI 33 -12 LAT
NED 46 -0 SUI
SUI 31 - 5 LAT
SUI 24 - 5 ISR
Ranking: 9th place
Overall, the team takes home the 7th place of this year’s EC Trophy, which sees the Netherlands and Ukraine move back up to the GPS. The top 3 teams were playing at a level above the others, with teams ranked 4-9 being close in their level and wins between the teams ranked in these places also depending on the daily form of the team.
The swiss players are now off to a well-deserved summer break in order to recharge the batteries to come back to the swiss rugby pitches in the fall. We wish Laure a speedy recovery and are sure to see her back in her rugby boots when her ankle will be healed!
- ANDREY Kim (RC Nyon)
- BOSSHARD Rahel (GC Zurich)
- CASPARIS Carole - Captain (RC Falcons, Malta)
- DAMACHI Lami (RC CMSG, Genève)
- FONTANA Géraldine (GC Zurich)
- FUX Selina (RC Luzern)
- GARDETA Claudia (RC Albaladéjo, Lausanne)
- GERBER Nina (RC Bern)
- HAYMOZ Simone (GC Zurich)
- MANI Ramona (RC Bern)
- TESTENIERE, Laure (RC Bern)
- THIEBAUD Anne (RC Albaladéjo, Lausanne)
- ULLMANN Fabienne (RC Bern)
- HEAD COACH - Malick Tcha-Tchibara
- COACH - Paul Nieto
- PHYSIO - Monique Lemmens
- MANAGER - Christa Herrmann
text: Christa Herrmann
photos: Rugby Europe / FSR