Posted: Tue, 13 Dec 2016 10:28
Sunday December 11th 2016 was the day The Dorset Destroyers Wheelchair Rugby Club finally started in the Super Series League, Division 3.
The club, having been established in 2014, held 4 taster sessions to gauge reaction as to whether there was demand for the sport, only to find out that there was a huge amount of disabled people waiting to play.
The club had played 6 friendlies in the build up, losing 2, drawing 2 and winning 2, so the confidence was good and the team were gelling well. Sadly in disability sports you get players pulling out for health reasons or who cannot continue to play, so the Dorset Destroyers merged with Woodbridge Warriors from Suffolk to play in the league under the Destroyers name.
The plan worked very well and having only met for 3 hours, the team played very well in their first game against The Brighton Buccaneers. It was a pretty even match at times, but the Dorset Destroyers then started to pull away to a comfortable lead winning 33-24.
The next match was played 15 minutes later (The league being kept to a one day event every couple of months to save on costs) the Destroyers took on Stoke Mandeville Maulers who were a formidable force and were the team to beat, but the Destroyers could not match them losing 45-11.
The Destroyers then had an hour's break and although feeling a bit battered from the loss, they took it on the chin, got back into their rugby wheelchairs and took on local rivals The Hammerheads from Southampton. This was going to be tough.
The game started off fairly evenly but again the Dorset Destroyers started to pull away coming out the eventual winners 27-20.
The time had come to celebrate, not only had they played their first league matches, but they'd won as well and the exhaustion was showing, but there were tears and beaming smiles.
History had been made, Dorset's first ever wheelchair rugby club were now playing in the League. A team with no sponsors and run by a bunch of mates was now second place in Division 3.
Chairman Nick Coombs said "A fantastic way to start, a day to celebrate and then we get back to training next week to do it all over again. We cannot rest on our laurels, this is going to keep running till the end of April, so we must not be complacent"