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Tag players are the lifeblood of the game. They play in the leagues, represent communities, are selected for representative teams and play for their countries at International events and Tag World Cups. The ITF would love to communicate directly with the players and also get their valued feedback on all things Tag related from around the world.

It is with this in mind that we are developing a players portal that will not only provide players an opportunity to register as a valuable member of the International Tag community but also to receive information on training courses, referees and coaches development structures and upcoming events via our dedicated channels in the future.

We will also provide registered members with an opportunity to purchase ITF branded clothing and accessories from our licensed manufacturers around the World. In World Cup years, those registered players will have the opportunity to purchase World Cup replica memorabilia at a members’ discount.

Aifric O’ Malley, a lady Irish International player shares her experiences of a Tag World Cup below.

“Having missed out on the 2015 Tag Rugby World Cup, I was delighted to be selected for Ireland’s 2018 team. I had never been to Australia so seeing a new country and getting to represent my own country at the same time was an opportunity I could not miss.

We trained hard in advance of the tournament and enjoyed some really great warm up games in Sydney before traveling to Coffs Harbour. I was asked to be part of the launch of the tournament at an event overlooking the Sydney Harbour Bridge. This was the start of meeting other players and coaches from around the world. It was great to chat to players who were coming to the tournament from far and wide, as well as those there representing the host nation. We met the Mayor of Coffs, and before even setting foot in Coffs, I knew we were in for a great reception when we made our trip north.

The opening ceremony of the World Cup was a very special one for me. I was lucky enough to be chosen to sky dive into the stadium carrying my country’s flag. I had never jumped out of a plane before. As it was something I had always wanted to do, there was no chance of me refusing. The view of Coffs was incredible, the feeling of soaring through the air looking at all the miniscule houses, boats and people below is one I will never forget. As the stadium came into view, I could see the players and coaches lining the pitch, along with family, friends and supporters packing out the stand. The noise was deafening and a real testament to the organisers of the tournament and the enthusiasm of everyone involved. Having landed not quite as gracefully as I had hoped, I then proceeded to the stage to read the players’ charter. Another honour that I hoped to uphold as a player during the World Cup.

The tournament itself was incredibly run, it really was a demonstration of all the hard work that had been put into organising it. There were thousands of players, coaches and referees all moving around from pitch to pitch like clockwork. Everyone knew where they had to be and at what time. It was like a military operation.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all those involved in the organising and running of the tournament. It goes without saying that these tournaments could not happen without the dedication and hard work of some very passionate and driven individuals. Without whom I would not have been able to live out a dream of representing my country on tag’s biggest stage.”

“My Tag World Cup experience.” – Daryl Sandft (Tag World Cup Gold medal winner, New Zealand Men’s Open player / coach)

The World Cup for our team was an awesome experience for us as we won the Open Men’s Division. Going to the World Cup, we picked our team with a good balance of experience and youth. Selecting the team early allowed our team to sort a training schedule, uniforms, travel arrangements and accommodation. The training schedule had to be sorted quickly so it didn’t interrupt with 2018 NZTFI Tag Nationals and winter sports. We were lucky enough to get sponsorship from some businesses to help with the financial expenses.

We organized our travel dates to be in Coffs Harbour a few days before the tournament and before any other NZ team. This was to allow the boys to train with our Australia-based players and relax a bit before the big tournament ahead of us. The staff at Opal Cove Resort were amazing and the facilities that the resort had to offer was perfect for our team to recover and rest. The tournament started off with a march, all the teams walked onto the main fields for the opening ceremony and watched the different countries perform their cultural war dances. Two open grade games were played shortly after the ceremony to kick off the much-awaited tournament.

Our games were competitive even though some score lines don’t show it. We did well to secure victories against teams that were both relentless and never gave up. Our team played with pride. The heat and humidity were other factors we had to battle against coming from the mild New Zealand weather.

Our management were fantastic and took photos with each team to capture moments of our world cup campaign. Our Semi-final win over Australia was one of the tournament highlights as it went to a drop off. What made the victory special was that the Australian team had never been beaten at a World Cup tournament before.

The Grand Final win against a fast Lebanon side was the highlight of the tournament for me, especially after all the hard work the team did to get to the final and accomplish the main goal we set out to complete. We all know finals can be decided on a bounce of a ball. Our team managed to pull through and win a gold medal… something we will all treasure for a very long time.

Lastly, I just want to say a massive thank you to the boys (in our Kiwi Blacks Men’s Open team) for believing in my coaching and for all the hard work they put into the campaign. This would not have been possible without their commitment and trust.

We would like to offer you the opportunity to become a part of this growing international community by registering as a Tag player by clicking on the link below.