Sunday, October 5, 2008

Auckland Takes Women's Rugby National Title, 13-12

In a tightly fought game, Auckland held off Canterbury at Eden Park, Auckland, by 13-12 to win the women's rugby national NPC title over the weekend.

Dogged defence in the last 15 minutes kept Canterbury at bay and enabled Auckland to win the title for yet another year.

The national women's team, The Black Ferns, current World Cup champions, will play two test matches against Australia later in October.

Women's rugby continues to get second-level treatment from some rugby unions, such as Canterbury's. In early September, that union's executive bumped the Canterbury team off Rugby Park's field in favour of playing games involving men's Colts & Metro sides as well as B sides. The women were left to play their previously scheduled game at a venue with an inferior playing surface.

In the US, if the team were a school or college-level one, one could see a Title IX action being brought.

But male-dominated NZ rugby unions might still need to keep an eye over their shoulders should some enterprising civil rights lawyer find a way to use the Human Rights Act to tighten the screws on rugby administrators in order to level the playing field between genders.

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