Rugby Union

Dream debut for Sapper Lauren Brooks sees Army rugby defeat Sweden

A dream debut for Sapper Lauren Brooks saw the Army Women's rugby union side beat Sweden 18 points to 5 in Aldershot.

She scored two tries to help the Army side earn their first win in 2023 – Pte Courtney Pursglove was on target from the kicking tee adding two penalties and a conversion. 

Victory for the Forces side also meant new head coach Sarah Mitchelson got her tenure off to a winning start.

The British Army welcomed Sweden to Aldershot for only the second meeting between the sides.

Four seasons ago the Army ran out winners 40 points to 3. Much has happened during the intervening years including the passing of the baton as Patron from Army Rugby.

This was the first opportunity for the Army Rugby Union to mark the accession of King Charles.

The last time the teams clashed the Army scored six tries.

Against a much-improved Sweden, the Army was initially struggling to impose themselves, but it was not long before the home side were able to make inroads into the Swedish territory.

The military women's pack eventually proved too strong for Sweden as they were shunted backwards, and Spr Lauren Brooks claimed a try on her Army debut.

Brooks who serves as a Sapper with the Royal Engineers and plays her club rugby for Harlequins, established a comfortable points cushion for the Army after she dotted down before the end of the first half.

The Army side then spent almost all of the second half deep in their own territory, repelling consistent waves of Swedish attack.

Some solid defensive work typified by Army skipper SSgt Jade Mullen kept the Scandinavians at bay.

The match finished 18-5 to the Army with new head coach Sarah Mitchelson enjoying victory in her first fixture in charge.

Watch: Spr Lauren Brooks reflects on her dream debut.

Spr Lauren Brooks was overjoyed to make her mark in military rugby as the current Inter-Services Champions overcame their international rivals.

She said: "I've wanted to be involved in this setup for a long time.

"I think it's an absolute honour and privilege to put on the red shirt, so to come out here and come away with two tries, I think, topped it off quite nicely."

The Army Senior Women, reigning forces champions, will look to continue their winning ways against the British Police, as part of an Aldershot double-header on Wednesday, 25 January.

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