Since the start of rugby in the post-COVID era, Black Pearls have been the undisputed champions of women’s rugby in Uganda.

The women’s outfit, based at King’s Park in Bweyogerere but have players from as far as Jinja City, have so far won the Central Region Tens Championship plus the Central Region and National Sevens Series.

And this weekend, they dethroned national XVs defending champions Thunderbirds with a bold 73-12 statement at home.

Win or lose in their yet-to-be-rescheduled game-in-hand against second-placed Avengers, the Black Pearls are 2022 women’s national XVs champions.

However, there is no doubt that they will want to win that match too for a perfect crowning moment.

It is this championship mentality that inspired them against Thunderbirds. While their Jinja-based teammates were recovering from a road accident last weekend, the Black Pearls players decided to take on the Thunderbirds this Saturday.

This prompted veteran coach Helen Koyokoyo Buteme to dust her boots and enter the trenches alongside her 19 available players.

But they played like they didn’t miss a single player on the day.

Within five minutes after kickoff, speedster Emilly Lekuru had already scored the first try of the match. She would go on to set an unprecedented record of seven tries in a single match for the Black Pearls and, probably, for all rugby that has ever been played in the country.

The Black Pearls meant business as they scored for fun through Racheal Mufuwa (2), Grace Auma (3), and Bushira Namutebi. Charlotte Mudoola converted four of the thirteen tries.

All of Thunderbirds’ dozen points came off Mary Kyoita’s boot as the Kyadondo outfit left King’s Park without entering the Black Pearls’ try area.

In the other match on the weekend, Avengers obliterated a sorry Mbale Eagles by an unanswered 123 points at Busambaga in Entebbe. The Eagles only confirmed that they would honour this fixture on the night before after overcoming financial difficulties.

Ernest Akorebirungi is an amateur rugby player and a keen follower of local Ugandan rugby.

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