Saturday the 18th was in many ways the perfect day for a rugby 7’s competition. The sun was shining and despite there being a chilly breeze, everyone seemed to be enjoying the smell of various BBQ stalls and the colourful jugs of Pimms that kept popping up everywhere. Alcohol seemed to be one of the driving forces behind the throngs of spectators – who could resist the promise of a good game and a premium pint to match?
Rugby is a sport that I have never really understood, with all the running forwards and passing backwards malarkey. Yet Saturday changed that and I think I’ll be more likely to watch the Rugby World Cup rather than the England Match next time my dad forces a celebratory BBQ! Just as the players took their time to warm up, my initial conserved clapping when a try was scored at 9:20am later changed into uncontrolled screaming as the semi finals took place at 5:00pm. The urge to win was not only palpable on the pitch but also on the sideline and was a feeling that became impossible to not be consumed by. Whether it be the typical scenic St. Andrews environment, the optimistic sunshine or the growing excitement for the after party, it was an experience that could not be quite paralleled in my time as a fresher so far.
At this point I should probably admit that I wasn’t supporting the St. Andrews team for personal reasons. However, they seemed to be doing well from what I heard and my own sense of patriotism kicked in when they played on the pitch that the DURFC were also playing on. The variety of names that came up in the brochure were an inappropriate kaleidoscope of nomenclature themselves and this provided a wee spark of entertainment whilst the breaks between matches were drawn out.
All in all it was a wonderful afternoon that transcended the initial fatigue and depression that a cold, early morning had offered. I would definitely recommend going to the next one because the sense of camaraderie made everyone seem like they were part of something special. Even if you aren’t the sporting type, it had an atmosphere that one would not want to miss and if you were supporting the right team…the after party to match!
A big thanks must go to the student body who organised the event as it must have been one hell of a job with the prestigious title of “Largest student-run 7’s tournament in the UK” to live up to.
All photos courtesy of Lightbox Creative St Andrews.