As a bit of an antidote to the game that is called 'football' or 'soccer', and being an ardent rugby fan (#realfootball), I've been following the Women's Rugby World Cup, the pool games for which are being held at Guildford, with the Semi-Finals and Finals being at the home of my beloved Harlequins, the Twickenham Stoop.
I haven't been able, yet, to get to any matches, although have watched what I can on television. My family and I will also be at m parents for the final; otherwise we would have gone. Instead, we have opted to go to the Semi-Finals that are being played on Wednesday (1st September) at the Twickenham Stoop, starting at 6pm. Unless there is a huge disaster, England will be one of the top seeds and playing in one of the games, as a favourite to go through to the Finals, where in all likelihood they will meet New Zealand.
Women's rugby is superb. It is a free-flowing fast moving, running game. I'm not going to compare it to the game men play as I think that would be doing the players a dis-service. I thoroughly enjoy watching it and am delighted that there have been big crowds turn out in Guildford, with, for example, this Saturday's action being a sell-out. On the opening day people had to be turned away. It is a fantastic opportunity to watch a high standard of rugby but very reasonably.
However (there is always a 'but'). I have to have a moan. In looking to purchase tickets, I visited the official site (http://www.rwcwomens.com/) and rang the ticket booking line. Ticketmaster operate on behalf of the RWC the sale of tickets; advertised at £15 for adults and £5 for children - very reasonable prices. I was, however, horrified to be informed that in addition, there would be a £1.90 'service fee' on each adult ticket and £1.50 on each child ticket. In addition to this there would be a £2.50 fee for the whole transaction. What on earth is this for?
I'm also collecting tickets so I suspect there are little postage costs. Total additional 'charges' of £13.80. I feel very aggrieved at these - and whilst I could have gambled on the game not selling out, with 2 adults and 7 children, it was just not a practical option.
Hopefully, the good rugby will continue and we see a victorious England lift the trophy next weekend. Watch out for it on Sunday afternoon.