Alcock swaps lab coat for Touch Rugby World Cup

Scotland Women's Touch Rugby World Cup team will be in action in Australia. Pic: Greg Macvean
Scotland Women's Touch Rugby World Cup team will be in action in Australia. Pic: Greg Macvean
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Frankie Alcock will temporarily hang up her lab coat when she to travels to Australia’s Gold Coast to captain Scotland at the 2015 Women’s Touch Rugby World Cup later this month.

The 29-year-old from Shandon, a microbiologist within the Royal Agricultural College on the outskirts of Edinburgh, will join another four Capital-based players in the 17-strong squad which will pull on dark blue shirts in Coffs Harbour, New South Wales.

Alcock, whose club side, Six Pack, competes in both local and national leagues, said: “I played full contact rugby when I was studying at Edinburgh University. Then I got involved in Touch mainly for social reasons. In addition to playing for my club, we have an open session on The Meadows every Sunday (Touch in the Meadows) to encourage people into the sport.

“I’ve been playing Touch for seven years now and it’s a great honour for me to be leading Scotland into a World Cup tournament.

“I’m delighted that my parents, Mike and Judith, will be making the trip to Australia to watch me in action.”

Another of the Edinburgh-based quintet travelling Down Under is 26-year-old actuary Nikki Callan from Hillside, who will be make her debut for Scotland at the World Cup.

Nikki has enjoyed what can only be described as a meteoric rise to prominence in Touch Rugby, having only started to play the game last year.

She revealed: “I got into Touch initially as a social activity but, after playing a few games, I started attracting attention from some club sides. I was asked to train with a team called Galaxy and my involvement in the sport grew from there. I’m really excited about the tournament and very proud to have the honour of representing my country at such a prestigious event.”

Touch is a minimal contact sport which enables players to participate in a variation of rugby without being subjected to tackles associated with the traditional game. It originated in Australia in 1963 and has since gained popularity in many countries.

The Touch World Cup kicks off on April 29 and the Scottish Women’s side are in a group with USA and Japan as well as reigning world champions Australia.