These Gympie women are tougher than nails
RUGBY UNION: THE Gympie Hammers are prepared for the Noosa International Sevens tournament this weekend.
The youthful Harlow and Hampton Hammers women's Sevens team hosted Caloundra and The University of the Sunshine Coast on Friday night, with the Gympie outfit scoring a win and a loss against the university teams.
In the first game, the Hammers defeated the USC first team 27-4.
Gympie captain Bec Briggs said the game provided a showcase for the talent in the gold town.
"I think our teamwork is what sets us apart,” Briggs said.
"Our girls have such determination and are so passionate for it, none of them miss a training session.
"One girl had never touched a football before she came to us. It's unbelievable to see.”
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In the second game The Hammers lost five tries to three to the USC second team, but chose to field a wholly under-18 side for the encounter.
Briggs said the calculated decision came to blood the youngsters to build their experience, a kind of baptism of fire to be without the older players on the field.
"They smashed us but it was all to grow their experience and boost their confidence,” Briggs said.
"I was so proud of them, I could not have been prouder.
"Georgia Zamenak and Peta Dray, Jemma Lee, they all had good games I want to name them all.
"All the girls just played really well off each other.”
Briggs said the team have only lost two games from eight this season, and points to the fact the women gel so well together largely thanks to their involvement in local touch football.
"I think it's because so many of them have played touch together for so long.”
"We will be a strong team this season and beyond because we are always building.”
With the Noosa International Sevens on this weekend, the women will hit the track alongside the men's team to sharpen their skills.
"It'll be the same as we always do, our training run every Thursday night,” Briggs said.
In the men's game, Hammers coach and player Sean Dixon said his team are also ready for the weekend of rugby.
As to what to expect, Dixon, who has played at the Noosa tournament before, said the Hammers hope to provide a stern test against the unknown.
"I have played in it before, not as the Hammers, I don't think the Hammers have had a team in there before,” he said.
"I'm not too sure to be honest, it depends who the other teams are, and what they bring on the day.
"We'll be pretty competitive, we've been working hard in training and we'll give it a good go.
"Hopefully a few of the young fellas will have a good crack.”
The Hammers are in a rebuilding stage and Dixon pointed to the teams youth as its main advantage, with speed and agility being the weapon of choice.
"Speed and a few guys who are very good one-on-one. We have a few boys who are great with speed and agility and they will pose a few headaches,” Dixon said.
"It's about getting out, having a good time, a good run and enjoy it.
"A few boys haven't had a go at sevens before so it'll be good to see them have a go.”