THE seeds of England women’s rugby World Cup win were sown in Henley as four former Hawks players led the nation to victory last Sunday.
Rochelle “Rocky” Clarke, Tamara Taylor, Rachael Burford and Danielle Waterman all played for Henley in the Noughties and took to the field in Paris as the women’s side put three consecutive final defeats behind them to finally lift the trophy by beating Canada 21-9.
Clarke, Taylor and Waterman, the latter who crossed the line for England’s first try against Canada, played in the finals of 2006 and 2010, with England losing both to New Zealand. Burford also lined up against the Kiwis four years ago.
Clarke, 33, who won her 95th cap on Sunday, joined Henley as a 16-year-old and left in 2008.
Henley women’s section president and committee member Peter Allen, who coached Clarke and Taylor, said: “They both came to us as teenagers. When she first came to us, Rochelle (Clarke), drank too much and smoked and I told her if she gave it up she could play for England by the time she was 20.