A Woman’s university rugby player Maddy Lawrence died tragically as a result of an injury experienced while playing the sport.
Maddy Lawrence, a University of the West of England winger, died in hospital on March 25 as a result of a rugby injury, according to her club. On March 7, Lawrence, 20, was tackled while playing for the University of the West of England Women’s second team versus the University of Bristol.
Writing on Instagram, her club wrote: “Maddy exemplified what it means to be a UWE Women’s Rugby Player, ‘tackling’ every new skill with enthusiasm. She proudly represented our club both on and off the rugby pitch, growing into the sport and our rugby family.
“Maddy was a bubbly girl who was so fun to be around. Whenever she smiled and laughed you couldn’t help but smile and laugh with her. That was the sort of player, friend, sister and daughter Maddy was.
“Her everlasting energy has left its mark on this club, she will forever be our number 11 and will forever be our friend. We will be retiring the number 11 shirt in Maddy’s honour and remembrance.”
The official Twitter account of rugby’s governing board in England the RFU, added: “On behalf of everyone at the RFU, we extend our heartfelt sympathies to the family and friends of Maddy Lawrence. The thoughts of everyone in the game are with UWE Women’s Rugby, their players, members and the wider rugby community.”
A spokesperson for UWE Bristol said: “Everyone in the UWE Bristol community is profoundly shocked and saddened by the death of our student and talented UWE Women’s Rugby player Maddy Lawrence.
“We would like to pass on our deepest condolences and sympathies to Maddy’s family, friends and teammates, at this very difficult time.
“Fellow students, university staff and members of the UWE Bristol sporting community affected by this tragic news can access a full range of university support services offered by our Wellbeing Service or can contact the Samaritans helpline.”
Tom Monks, head of UWE Women’s Rugby Union, said: “Maddy was an absolute pleasure to coach. She wanted to learn and appreciated every playing opportunity that her dedication warranted. The unity and togetherness of this year’s squad is the strongest I’ve ever felt in my 20 years of coaching and Maddy’s beaming smile and warmth embodied the incredible bond we have.”
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You can leave a tribute to Maddy in the comments section below.
Lawrence’s teammates are now asking all women’s rugby teams to hold a one-minute applause before any games this weekend in her memory and there are plans to launch a crowdfunding appeal to raise money for her family soon.
With news of Maddy’s tragic death spreading on social media, England’s most-capped rugby international Rocky Clark shared her condolences, writing on Instagram: “So sorry to hear this devastating news, my thoughts are with all her team mates, family and friends. “A young life taken way too soon.”
The incident comes just a month after Evesham Rugby Club player Jack Jeffery, 27, was taken to hospital after being injured in the seniors league game against Berkswell and Balsall and sadly lost his life.