Total Rugby Radio: Women's World Cup Special!

(IRB.COM) Friday 3 September 2010
 Total Rugby Radio: Women's World Cup Special!
Total Rugby Radio's Seb Lauzier (top left) with Hannah Porter, Stephen Jones, Nicky Ponsford and Casey Robertson

The sixth Women's Rugby World Cup has reached its climax, a final on Sunday between defending champions New Zealand and the hosts England at the Twickenham Stoop.

To mark the occasion, this week Total Rugby Radio has a special edition on the Women's Game and this World Cup, which has been ground-breaking in so many ways.


The Total Rugby Radio team was joined in the studio by representatives from both finalists - all three of them world champions - as well as Stephen Jones, the Rugby Correspondent of the Sunday Times.

Hannah Porter, a World Cup winner in 2002 and 2006 and manager of the current crop of Black Ferns, and number 8 Casey Robertson provided New Zealand's perspective on their fourth World Cup final in a row.

England Women's Head of Performance Nicky Ponsford, herself a World Cup winner back in 1994, represented the tournament hosts.

The programme also has reaction to the two thrilling semi finals from England flanker Maggie Alphonsi and New Zealand captain Melissa Ruscoe, as well as the thoughts of Susan Carty, the IRB's first Women's Development Manager, and former England captain Phil de Glanville, who now works at Sport England.

Total Rugby also hear from three of the 10 females on the match official panel in Dana Teagarden, Gabriel Lee and Sarah Corrigan, who has since been named as referee for the World Cup final.


Among the topics up for discussion:

- Can Women's Rugby have a professional future?
- What are the key issues facing the growing Women's Game?
- How much of a tipping point has this World Cup been?
- Can New Zealand win a fourth title in succession, or will England win it at home?

Jones, who has covered every Rugby World Cup since 1991, has certainly been impressed by what he has seen from the 12 participating teams over the last two weeks at Surrey Sports Park and the Twickenham Stoop.

"The big thing in this and the big advance has been in the sheer physicality, people who have come to watch this World Cup for the first time have been absolutely staggered by the sheer physicality of it," Jones said on the show.

"There were two hits in the England-Australia game which wouldn't have disgraced Richie McCaw or Martin Johnson at his best. The ferocity of it is incredible and it has gone up a level, it has gone up 20 or 30 points on the last World Cup.

"The actual standard and the physicality and the intensity and the passion is something to wonder at."


Also available as an i-Tunes download >>