🏉 Strap yourselves in for what promises to be a seismic encounter between the top two teams in the Tyrrells Premier 15s who are both unbeaten. The Stoop is the venue as Harlequins Women and Saracens lock horns for the first time this season. Kick-off is at 3pm and tickets are available.
It was a case of so near yet far back in April for Harlequins Women progressing all the way to the end of 18/19 season Grand Final only to fall short at the final hurdle losing 33-17 to today’s opponent Saracens at Franklin’s Gardens. The team from Allianz Park in north London retaining the inaugural title they won in 2018.
Harlequins Women may not have claimed the silverware but they played some great rugby last season and having strengthened their side over the summer the team from the Stoop have picked off where they left off – at the time of writing unbeaten during the 2019/2020 season making it eight wins from eight with an impressive 39-13 victory over Wasps FC last weekend which followed a crushing 81-0 victory over Firwood Waterloo Ladies on 30 November. Coming into the game they are top of the league on 40 points
Having established themselves as the pre-eminent team in the Premier 15s since the tournament launched in 2017 Saracens are on a mission to retain their status as the league’s top side and win a hat-trick of titles. Beating their fierce rivals this afternoon will lay down a serious marker they are favourites once again. Thus far Saracens are also unbeaten albeit were stretched to the limit against Loughborough Lightning in early October – coming back from 0-17 down at half-time to snatch a 28-24 victory with a try in the last minute – before overcoming a resolute Gloucester-Hartpury side 15-7. In their last match the team from Allianz Park enjoyed a comprehensive 69-12 win over DMP Sharks in the Sarries final home game of the year, a result which kept them in second place on 39 points just one behind Harlequins.
Ones to watch: Six Nations’ top try scorer Jess Breach and firefighter extraordinaire Shaunagh Brown (pictured above) were two of Harlequins Women’s standout players last season and have continued in the same vein this season. For Saracens lightning fast winger Georgie Lingham could prove to be a match winner if she repeats her form of last weekend when touching down for a hat-trick of tries against DMP Sharks.
🗝️ Gates open: 1.30pm
🏉 Match starts: 3pm
🎟️ Tickets in advance are available via the ‘Get Tickets’ link.
🎟️ Tickets on the gate subject to availability. Checking the Harlequins Women Twitter feed before travelling is recommended.
🚊🚗 Travel tips: The nearest train station is Twickenham, which is a short walk from the stadium. Regular trains run to Twickenham from London Waterloo, Clapham Junction, Reading, Ascot and Windsor & Eton Riverside. Turn right out of the station, and continue down Whitton Road. Proceed down Court Way and turn left on to Egerton road. At the mini-roundabout, turn right onto Craneford Way and enter the stadium at the end of the road.
Car parking is available to the public in the Rosebine car park for £10. To access the Rosebine car park continue past The Stoop on your left and continue on the A316. The Rosebine car park is located 200 metres on the left after passing the stadium. Parking can be purchased in advance by clicking here
About the Premier 15s: The Tyrells Premier 15s is a competition featuring the best club sides in England taking place from August to April and run by the Rugby Football Union (RFU). A top tier of women’s rugby union has existed since 1990 leading to an improvement in England’s fortunes on the international stage which saw the ‘Red Roses’ win the Women’s Rugby World Cup in 2014 and finish runners up in 2017.
The Premier 15s (also known as Women’s Super Rugby) was launched in September 2017 to support the Red Roses’ ambition to be the number one team in the world. 10 teams were invited to take part in the competition – largely drawn from existing Women’s Premiership teams – which receives a multi-million pound investment from the RFU to help deliver the minimum standards expected and provide high-quality coaching, facilities, training environments and community engagement plans. Saracens Women were the inaugural champions beating London rivals Harlequins in the play-off final.
There is no relegation or promotion for the first three years of the competition and each team plays each other, both at home and away – over a total of 18 rounds – with the top four teams going through to the play-offs. The winners of the two semi-finals progress to the Grand Final in April 2020, which in 2019 was held at Northampton Saints’ Franklin’s Gardens ground.
The play-off final winners will be crowned the 2019/2020 Premier 15s champions. The current champions are Saracens Women who beat Harlequins 33-17 last April at Franklin’s Gardens.
The Premier 15s teams for season 2019/2020 are Bristol Bears Women, Darlington Mowden Park Sharks, Firwood Waterloo Ladies, Gloucester-Hartpury Women’s RFC, Harlequins Women, Loughborough Lightning, Richmond FC, Saracens Women, Wasps FC Ladies and Worcester Warriors.
In the London area there are 4 teams to watch; Saracens Women (who play their home matches at Allianz Park), Wasps Ladies (Twyford Sports), Richmond Women (based at Richmond Athletic Ground) and Harlequins Women (based in Guildford and Twickenham Stoop).