Renegades and Teachers set up Nichol Shield final showdown
Renegades and Teachers overcame gruelling encounters to reach the final of the Nichol Shield at the National Sports Centre North Field.
Renegades beat Police 22-17 while Teachers prevailed 41-36 over Mariners during the semi-finals of the competition, which was held last Saturday.
The semi-finals of the women’s Scully Cup were also held, with Renegades defeating Teachers 10-5 and Police thrashing Mariners 35-0.
The finals along with the traditional Duckett and Teachers Memorial games will take centre stage at the same venue this weekend.
“We are looking forward to finals next weekend at NSC,” Sean Field-Lamont, the Bermuda Rugby Football Union president, told The Royal Gazette.
“The finals will be followed by two matches – the Police's Duckett memorial and the Teachers memorial games. These are traditional games with the BRFU fielding ‘The Rest’ teams.”
The two memorial games have been brought forward from April 9.
“It's unfortunate that the games could not be played on their traditional dates,” Field-Lamont added. “But hopefully next year we can schedule them in line with the club’s desires.
“The BRFU looks upon these two upcoming matches as an opportunity to honour the memorials but also give players a chance to mingle and play good rugby. Hopefully it will be a good spectacle for the rugby enthusiasts.”
Despite the challenges brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic, the association managed to complete their league campaign under trying circumstances, with a combined team of Renegades and Mariners players claiming the men’s title and Police the women’s.
“Like many sports in the island, rugby has found the last two years extremely challenging, the Covid pandemic has impacted us all,” Field-Lamont said. “The BRFU adopted a very pragmatic approach and worked diligently with the government to ensure a safe return to play.
“Obviously we had to rethink our strategic plans. All of our programmes were negatively impacted and the priority became participation; getting people back to the game we love.
“It has been a hard road to navigate but with the work of the BRFU and all the volunteer executives, we have managed to get a semblance of league action – albeit a very truncated season.
“There were in essence four clubs competing. But in the men’s competition we adopted World Rugby Guidelines around a more abbreviated version because of lack of players.
”The women’s touch rugby bounced back and it is encouraging to see new recruits sprinkled among the veterans. The standard of skills and play is fun watch.“