Student spends weekend at all-star rugby tournament

This past week, Zafirah Abdulrahoof, ’18, took part in the National Small College Rugby Organization All-Star Women’s 7s Tournament, which brought seven different all-star teams to Eckerd College in Florida for a weekend of fast-paced Rugby 7s.

Abdulrahoof played on the Allegheny Rugby Union all-star team, which was made up of players from other schools around the area such as Robert Morris and Fairmont State. The team competed against squads from all over the country, including teams from Ohio, Texas and New England.

Photos contributed by ZAFIRAH Abdulrahoof
Zafirah Abdulrahoof, ’18, attempts to break a tackle during the National Small College Rugby Organization All-Star Tournament that was held in St. Petersburg, Florida at Eckerd College.

The Campus: How did you get selected to play on the all-star team?

Abdulrahoof: The head of the union sent an email to the team asking for our availability, not an invitation. I received an email back in maybe an hour later saying that they were short on people because this girl had an injury and that I would work really well playing rugby at a higher level, would you like to come?

The Campus: What was it like playing with a whole new group of teammates?

Abdulrahoof: I thought it would be really difficult but it was actually really interesting … how we bonded really well and it was really fun really quick.

The Campus: What was your on-field highlight of the weekend?

Abdulrahoof: The second game, I was the only one on our team to score a try so that was cool.

The Campus: What was your off-field highlight of the weekend?

Abdulrahoof: On our second day there, we stayed in this hotel that overlooked the beach. Also, I connected really well with one person so we were walking around talking, just hanging out, and that was really memorable because it was so easy to find topics we could connect on.

The Campus: What’s next for you and rugby?

Abdulrahoof: I honestly want to keep playing rugby for the rest of my life, I don’t plan on quitting. It has, in a sense, saved my life, and also I’ve never connected so well with a group of girls before.

The Campus: Is there anything else you would like to add?

Abdulrahoof: On the last day, we had to get a group picture with every team and nobody had any hard feelings. We’re all there to have fun. Also, we had a social hour and our coach took away all our cell phones for two hours to force us to be social. Also we had to use the buddy system, so this girl from our team was walking toward the porta potties alone and our coach was like, “Why is she alone?” and the whole team went and followed her.