Beach rugby proves to be a hit at Clacton

Gazette: Looking for the gap - Colchester's Beach Babes take on Barnet (in pink). Looking for the gap - Colchester's Beach Babes take on Barnet (in pink).

CLACTON Rugby Club held their annual beach rugby competition and it proved another very successful day.

The soaring temperatures meant the sunshine coast lived up to its name and players were able to take a dip in the sea between games.

Started eight years ago in 2005, the competition has gone from strength to strength.

Played across six pitches on the sands of Martello Bay in Clacton, the initial competition had just 12 teams.

Saturday’s event saw 42 taking part, with large entries from Burnham-on-Crouch, Chelmsford and Colchester Rugby Clubs.

The competition has always been supported by Barnet Elizabethans Rugby Club and they arrived with their usual large contingent of teams, players and supporters.

There were also sides from Harwich, Haverhill, Ilford Wanderers and South Woodham Ferrers, as well as Clacton themselves.

The sides are mixed and vary from teams of dads and sons playing together, as well as mums and daughters.

The object is not all about winning, but having fun on the sand. And teams played a round-robin of games. The results were then collated to produce 11 small tournaments, with every team playing a mini-competition.

This produced 11 different finals, with the eventual winners resounding to such names as Grumpies & The Geezers, Saints & Sinners, Pass the Port to the Left, Ben’s Beach Bodies, Clacton Lions, Ravens, Quiz Team Aguilera, Corbeals, Chelmsford Beach Boys, Martin’s Marvels and Give Us A Wave.

Following the event, many of the teams and supporters went back to Clacton Rugby Club, where RFU council member Andrew Sarek was on hand to present the awards.

The club said that they were indebted to all the volunteers who made the day a success. Many volunteers had marked out pitches on the sand on the morning of the competition, while others had acted as referees. Other volunteers organised the event and manned the barbecues.

The club also said that they were grateful to Tendring District Council in establishing the event in the local summer calander.

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