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Germany fights to return to Euro comp

At the end of last year we reported on the financial problems that lead to the withdrawl of Germany from the European Championship and World Cup qualifying. Vivian Bahlmann updates the story.

Stormclouds over German rugby

In December 2019 Germanys national 15s-team had to pull out of competing in the 2020 Rugby Europe Championship due the unions financial struggles. The cuts made by the Union meant that Germanys youth teams won't compete in their respective European Championships. It also meant that for the second time since 2010 the womens XV got the axe.
 
Many might take this news some despair as after the last time it took until 2017 for the national XV to take the field again. But the women are not giving up that easily and are currently taking action: Captain Lisa Bohrmann initiated a crowdfunding campaign to raise money for a test-match against the British Army in England on the 28thof March.
 
In February 2019 Germany already played the British Army preparing for the European Championship. This year however the match is not a preparation, but has to be played instead of the championship games. As the campaign site states, this match will launch the run for the Rugby Europe Trophy in the coming year.
 
“It's an indescribable feeling to put on my jersey before representing my country. I don't want to miss it anymore and I truly hope with this campaign many girls will get the opportunity to feel the same thing now and in the future”, said captain Lisa Bohrmann about her goals for this fundraising effort.
 
Moreover, the campaign aims to raise awareness for the women’s situation hoping it will lead to sponsoring opportunities, which in turn shall strengthen women’s rugby in Germany as a whole. One step back and two (or three) steps forward.
 
Within 5 days, the campaign has reached 45% of its target, thanks to support of the players, family and friends. The diverse rewards organized around the national team are certainly an incentive for supporters. Thus, one can receive personalized messages, team gear or can even invite the players to a birthday party where they will surely inspire a new generation of young girls who will have a strong national team they can aspire to play for.
 
It should be noted however that if the campaign falls even just a Euro short of their target then the campaign will leave them empty-handed. Thus the slogan and hashtag of the campaign reflects the core issue at stake: Germany just wants to play Rugby #GermanyWantsToPlayRugby
 
The campaign is available in English and can be found under https://www.toyota-crowd.de/deutsche-rugby-frauen.
 
You can also check out the social media channels instagram.com/drfdeutscherugby/ and facebook.com/DeutscheRugbyFrauen/ .