Marion Sellier: Ruggers across the pond
Say what you want about Rugby in the USA but as with most sports which originate in England, our friends across the pond are doing a remarkable job at developing the game!
The numbers speak for themselves, aside from taking rugby and transforming the game into the most lucrative sport in the World (American Football) which is now worth $61 Billion, there are also 1.6 million people currently participating in Rugby in the USA. But do these numbers paint a clear enough picture? As Mark Twain once said "facts are stubborn things, but statistics are pliable". We caught up with Marion Sellier, 18, a talented student athlete who has represented the USA at Under 18 level, to help elucidate rugby across the Atlantic Ocean.
1. What first got you into Rugby?
"My dad is English and he grew up playing Rugby at boarding school there so I used to watch it with him, I was starting to get tired of soccer so we figured I might as well give it a try (no pun intended)."
2. How would you describe the current standard of Rugby over in the US?
"Obviously the game is still developing here, but in terms of global competition, women's rugby is actually pretty competitive. We saw the US beat the AB's in the Dubai 7's and make it to the final (although Australia did hand us a pretty heavy loss). We have really good athletes and considering how late players tend to pick up the sport here, the level is pretty good. There is a lot of room for continued growth of course, but kids are already beginning to play the game at younger and younger ages."
3. Do you follow any teams / players here in the UK?
"I watch all the premiership games, they air in the US. Wasps are my Dad's favourite club so I follow them, but my favourite are Saracens. Marcus Smith is pretty amazing, giving what he has done and his age, other than him I don't really like Harlequins though!
4. Tell us more about your current Rugby Club.
"I currently play for Brown University, it is an NCAA Division 1 program and was among the first colleges to give rugby a varsity status. We finished 3rd in the Ivy League for our fall 15s Season and are gearing up for the Spring 7s at the moment.
We have an Amazing Head Coach, Kathy Flores who won the first Women's World Cup in 1991 whilst playing for the US, she later went on to coach the national team and she really is a legend!"
Thank you for taking the time out to speak to us at GRM and wish you every success with your playing career!
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