Zoe Aldcroft to skipper Gloucester-Hartpury Women in Tyrrells Premier 15s opener
Having missed all of last season due to injury, Zoe Aldcroft will make her competitive debut for Gloucester-Hartpury Women on Saturday against Harlequins Ladies, and will also skipper the side.
Second row Aldcroft will lead a side that also sees prop Katie Dougan and centre Millie Wood make their first starts for Susie Appleby’s side as the Tyrrells Premier 15s gets underway.
Head Coach Appleby knows that Quins will be a tough opponent on the first day of the season, but is feeling positive.
“We’ve had an excellent preseason culminating in four friendly fixtures including two in France so we feel prepared to play, the girls are raring to go.
“Harlequins is a tough opener, they are an excellent side with strengths across the whole squad. We had two good very competitive games against them last season, and we expect more of the same tomorrow.
“Both us and Quins have added players to our squads – we welcome back Zoe Aldcroft after a season out with injury and also welcome Scottish International Katie Dougan who joins us after a summer playing in Canada.
“Connie Powell is able to make her first start in her preferred position at hooker, and we welcome Abi Walker back at number eight after a season out with injury.
“In the backs Rebecca de Filippo is back with us and I’m excited to see her combine with Millie Wood who is back from 7s. Kelly Smith and Ellie Underwood were outstanding on the wing for us last season, and will be a handful for Quins to deal with.
“We have young players in Iona Antwis and Elle Febrey, products of our junior academy, itching to get their first taste of Tyrrells Premier 15s rugby.
“It’s the start of a long season, I can’t wait to see where it takes us. With Gloucester and Hartpury both playing away tomorrow, I’m hoping we can get some support down at the Gillman’s ground 2pm KO, £2 entry, children free.”
SIX DEBUTANTS IN THE STARTING XV TO TAKE ON GLOUCESTER-HARTPURY
Harlequins Ladies Co-Head Coaches Karen Findlay and Gary Street have announced their squad to play Gloucester-Hartpury away on Saturday (kick-off: 14:00) with an array of new talent in the line-up.
There are debuts for new signings Leah Lyons and Chloe Butler in the pack while Lucy Packer, Emily Scott, Jade Mullen and Victoria Petersson all make their first starts in the backs. Teya Ashworth and Kiera Paul-Jones have been named among the replacements and will also be looking to make their debuts.
Following an incredibly successful season in the inaugural Tyrrells Premier 15s last year the squad, led by England star Rachael Burford again, are looking to go one step further than last year’s runners-up finish and claim the title this year.
Gary Street said: “We are really looking forward to the opening day of the season. “We have had a really good pre-season and Karen and I are looking forward to seeing where we are at against a strong opposition.
“There have been lots of changes all around the Tyrrells Premier 15s over the summer and it might take a while for teams to bed down. We have some exciting new debutants and hope it is a cracking game to start the season.”
All Harlequins Ladies home matches – both at The Stoop and Surrey Sports Park – are included in a 2018/19 Harlequins membership, alongside all home Gallagher Premiership, European Rugby Challenge Cup, and Premiership Rugby Cup encounters. To purchase yours today, head to tickets.quins.co.uk or call the Harlequins Ticket Office on 020 8410 6010.
|08/09/2018||2:00 pm||Premier 15s||2018-19|