Download the Cyffwrdd Gorllewin Gwyllt / Wild West Touch press release (right). Contact if you require further information or would like to organise an interview.
Cyffwrdd Gorllewin Gwyllt / Wild West Touch Competition Cyffwrdd Gorllewin Gwyllt / Wild West Touch brings the sport of Touch (sometimes known as Touch Rugby) to Llandysul in west Wales on the May Bank Holiday weekend, 5-6 May 2012.
Saturday’s competition will see families battling out to win the Cwpan Teulu / Family Cup. Tournament Director, Matthew Adams explains;
“The Family Cup is unique. As Touch is a minimal contact game, males and females of all ages can play together on the same team, making Touch the ideal sport for families and friends to come together and do something really enjoyable, not to mention the health benefits of running around playing Touch for a few hours! The Family Cup is the first of its kind in Wales so it’s going to be an exciting competition!”
The following day, Sunday 6th May, the adult competition takes place with Men’s, Women’s, Mixed (Men & Women) and over 35 divisions all competing to win the Cwpan Gorllewin Gwyllt / Wild West Cup. Again, Touch is unique in that men and women can compete together in mixed teams. Because of its low impact and low risk of injury, Touch attracts people that may have retired from playing competitive sports or those that wish to play in order to keep fit. Once they have caught the bug, many players continue to play Touch into their 50s and 60s making it one of the few sports that has a genuine life time participation cycle.
Developed in Australia in the 60s by groups of ex-Rugby League players that wanted to keep fit and continue to play competitive sports, Touch quickly became popular down under and soon Touch leagues, associations and clubs began to spring up. It wasn’t long before the rules were codified and the Federation of International Touch (FIT) was established. By this point the game had gone international and was also popular in other southern hemisphere nations such as New Zealand, South Africa and Fiji amongst others. It eventually landed in Wales with the arrival of two Kiwi ex-pats who started a league in Cardiff in 1990. That league has now grown to include over 100 teams competing every summer in the capital. It also led to the formation of the Wales Touch Association (WTA) in 1999 so that Wales could compete in the Touch World Cup held that year in Australia. The 2011 Touch World Cup took place in Scotland and had 26 nations participating, including seven teams from Wales (Men’s, Women’s, Mixed, Men’s 30+, Mixed 30+, Men’s 35+ and Men’s 40+)
Touch is played on a pitch 70m x 50m, there is no kicking, scrums, rucks, mauls or line-outs. Game time varies, but at the top level it is two halves of 20 minutes. Instead of the power, aggression and raw strength usually favoured by rugby union, Touch relies on player’s skills, wits and speed to score points. It is also famously easy to pick-up with straightforward rules. Matthew describes what drew him into the game;
“When I first started playing Touch I missed the physicality of rugby, but what I love about it is that the ball is almost always in play and I actually get my hands on it continuously – it is also a very fast game which is great for improving fitness. In Union I played prop for a while and spent most of the game wrestling in the mud and touching the ball about two or three times in 80 minutes!
There is no doubt that Touch improves running and handling skills and it’s no wonder that the Tri-Nation countries always play such good rugby – all of their players have grown up playing Touch!”
Wild West Touch is calling on groups to form teams and register for the event taking place in May. Teams could be made up of family or friends, a group of work colleagues, an existing rugby team or any other sports club or organisation, as Matthew illustrates;
“I’ve played for a mixed team and many of the ladies that play came into the game for a bit of a laugh, having never played any kind of rugby – most of them are netball or hockey players. But they now play every summer and some of them have even gone on to represent Wales in the Touch Euros and World Cups!
We are expecting entries from Touch teams that compete in the leagues in Llanelli, Swansea, Cardiff and beyond, but most of all I want to encourage local men, women and children to sign up a team with their family or mates and give it a go – I guarantee that they will enjoy it! The event website has lots of useful videos and other hints and tips to help understand the game. We’re being well supported by WTA with qualified referees and officials, so this promises to be a first-class experience.”
Wild West Touch is taking place in the beautiful Teifi Valley, on the playing fields in Llandysul, Ceredigion in west Wales. The location is right next to the River Teifi - famous for its fishing and kayaking. Accommodation for visiting teams is available at various B&Bs and hotels nearby, with bunkhouse accommodation and camping available through local outdoor sports adventurers, Llandysul Paddlers, whose centre is located just two minutes away from the action.
Anyone that wishes to enter a team or would like further information can go to the tournament website – www.gorllewingwyllt.com or the Facebook page – www.facebook.com/WildWestTouch
Regular updates, news, special offers and more are available by following the tournament's Twitter account at www.twitter.com/WildWestTouch.
You can also follow Matthew on Twitter at www.twitter.com/MattaPencarreg
Click on the picture below to download the WWT12 poster. Feel free to put this up in your office or club!