Brisbane’s inclusive gay rugby union team, the Hustlers, made a strong showing during their first game of the 2013 local season last weekend.
Unfortunately the day wasn’t a success for the newly reformed team but there were clear indications that the players had come a very long way.
The Hustlers did their best to force back a strong team from Goodna at the Ipswich Rugby Union Club in Woodend but couldn’t overcome the experienced team.
Being down 7-0 at half time didn’t faze the Hustlers who had some great opportunities and continued to make their presence known in the game.
A few injuries to some key positions set the Hustlers back early in the second half and despite a continued impressive showing and a strong final 15 minutes, the team eventually went down by 29 points.
The Hustlers has a few new members from the side that came second when they took on the Melbourne Chargers and Sydney Convicts during the 2012 Purchas Cup, and the team hopes to build upon its strengths as it plays more games together.
Last week, Hustlers coach Darren Hegarty told the Star Observer this season was about establishing the team as an inclusive club in Brisbane.
“The team has made huge strides in the short pre-season. Player recruitment has bought in quite a few novices as well as some experienced rugby players and we’ve been working hard on building our basic skill level, fitness and team cohesion,” Hegarty said.
Last month, the team held an intensive bootcamp over two days that ramped up training to fast track overall team bonding and skill levels.
The team will take on Riverside at the Easts Rugby Union Club, Coorpooroo in their next game on April 13 at 3pm.