Women's Rugby World Cup 2017

The social game: Guinness factory and Dublin’s River Liffey form part of Hong Kong’s maiden World Cup journey

Veteran scrum half Lindsay Varty takes us through the ins and outs of spending three weeks living away with the team

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 27 August, 2017, 3:00pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 27 August, 2017, 3:27pm

While rugby was top of the agenda for Hong Kong during their three-week Women’s Rugby World Cup campaign, there’s been plenty more going on behind the scenes during the team’s down time.

From trips to the Guinness factory and walks along Dublin’s River Liffey to a visit to Belfast’s peace lines and the general high jinks that comes with going away together, scrum half Lindsay Varty has been there to capture the moments every step of the way on social media.

“A lot of the tours we’ve been on, myself and a couple of others organise the social and team bonding type fun and games and things like that,” Varty says.

“Probably [coach] Jo [Hull] thinks I’m that way inclined – like to have a bit of fun – and I use Instagram, so she thought it would be appropriate.”

While Hong Kong lost all five of their games, the losses did little to sap their enthusiasm and Varty says the experience has been a memorable one in many ways.

“Rugby aside, there is a lot of other things that go on and 30 girls living together, it’s your rugby family and to live with them for a month is hectic but it’s so much fun,” she says.

Hey World Rugby, don’t you dare deny Hong Kong the chance to build on their debut Women’s Rugby World Cup campaign

“It’s almost like America’s Next Top Model in a sense because there is so much going on going on.

“Seeing how many people have come out to support us has been incredible. There is so many people from all over the world.”

And while Ireland is known for its beer and good times, Varty says the temptations weren’t an issue for the team during the tournament, something that may have changed since Saturday’s final match.

Still reason for Hong Kong to celebrate as 44-5 loss to Japan marks ‘disappointing’ end to women’s World Cup campaign

“We don’t have too many big drinkers in the team, they all abstain until the end of a tournament and then we’ll party on the last day,” adds Varty.