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JERSEY retained the touch inter-insular but it could so easily have gone Guernsey’s way. The annual event, which sees the men’s, ladies and mixed teams from each island compete, has been won by Jersey since it first began in 2005 but this year’s games were the closest yet. ‘Every game was full of drama and it was hard to see which team was going to win until the final whistle. Both islands continue to improve year on year which is testament to the hard work of the players, coaches and the committees who invest so much time, energy and finances into making touch as successful as it is,’ said chair of Guernsey Touch Katrina Bray. June’s World Cup, which both Guernsey and Jersey sent mixed teams to, meant there were no other international tournaments this summer and so both islands had to use mixed team players to supplement the men’s and the ladies’ teams.

THE 2011 FNB Touch Summer League draws to a close this week with five of the six trophies still to be decided. Only the men’s division has a clear winner with one game to go as PwC is on 30 points having recorded 10 wins. They are a point ahead of Concept 360, made up predominantly of the 1st XI rugby team, who have already played all of their fixtures and finish the season with 29 points. Galaxy Touch could steal second place from Concept 360 as they are just two points behind and could gain three points if they were to beat KPMG All Stars, currently lying 11th, on Wednesday.

GALAXY scooped two out of three trophies at the CISX Channel Islands’ Championship. The two-day tournament saw teams from Guernsey, Jersey, England, Scotland and Wales take part with more than 150 players competing including around 60 from off-island. ‘It was a huge success, no doubt the best CISX Channel Islands’ Championship we have had so far. The increased number of entries led to an extremely high level of touch and it was fantastic to see local teams competing against teams from Jersey and the UK,’ said Guernsey Touch chair,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray. The 10 mixed teams were divided into two pools with the top three teams in each division meeting in the cup, plate and bowl finals. The six men’s and six ladies teams were also divided into two pools with the results deciding which teams were in the cup, plate and bowl finals.

A RECORD number of teams and players will compete in next weekend’s CISX Channel Islands’ Championship. The two-day tournament, which is now in its fourth year, will see teams from Guernsey, Jersey, England, Scotland and Wales take part. More than 150 players will play over the weekend including around 60 from off-island. ‘We are absolutely delighted with the number of teams that have entered the CISX Channel Islands’ Championship. We established the tournament to give local players the opportunity to play off-island teams and to encourage people to come to Guernsey and the entries this year demonstrate that we have achieved that,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray. ‘We have teams from the UK who have never been to the island before so we’re hoping the weather will be kind and that we have a great weekend of touch.’

GUERNSEY returns home from the Touch World Cup as winners of the Mixed Open Bowl. In what was its first time at the tournament, the island has finished ninth in the world and every player is returning home with a gold medal. ‘This is an amazing achievement and one which has exceeded all of our expectations. We have had a phenomenal tournament, every player has proved that they fully deserved to be part of this squad and every one of them can be extremely proud that they are returning home with medals and silverware,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray. The five day tournament, which brought more than 100 teams from 27 different countries to Edinburgh, saw Guernsey seeded 10th at the beginning and they finished one place higher.

TWO great performances saw Guernsey reach the final of the Mixed Open Bowl at the Touch World Cup. Competing for the first time in the event, which has attracted more than 100 teams from 27 different nations, the island will now finish as one of the top 10 mixed national teams in the world. 'It's amazing, a simply brilliant performance by the team and they deserve this recognition after months of training and preparation. In terms of size, Guernsey is the smallest nation competing and so to be in the top 10 is a massive achievement,' said chair of Guernsey Touch Katrina Bray. Throughout the tournament, Guernsey has played nine men and seven women in each game but with Marie Stefani and Georgia Smith being ruled out by injury, there was little choice but to play with nine men and just five women and every player rose to the challenge.

GUERNSEY'S third day of games at the Touch World saw the standard of touch increase significantly. After finishing second in their pool in the preliminary round, the Greens found themselves in a pool with England, Scotland, USA and Niue. After losing to England on Thursday, Guernsey had three games in Edinburgh today. The first game was against USA and saw the Americans score two touchdowns before Guernsey settled into the game and pulled one back through Mark Rodliffe. USA scored once more to end the first half 3 - 1. Guernsey's second half saw them dominate the scoring with touchdowns from Matt Brehaut, Carly Parrott, Aaron Le Masurier and Justeen Baker to give them five. USA scored twice more to tie the game. However the Americans disputed the score and claimed to have won the game 6 - 5 despite the referees agreeing the game was a tie. The matter was taken to a judicial hearing who ruled against USA and the 5 - 5 draw was confirmed.

TOUCHDOWN difference retained Guernsey second place in Pool A of the Touch World Cup behind current Mixed Open champions New Zealand. Despite losing the last of its preliminary pool games, the Greens finished second with a touchdown difference of minus two compared to third place Singapore's minus 18. Guernsey's first game of day two of the tournament saw another early morning fixture as they took on Singapore on what was a very muddy pitch. Singapore took an early lead before Matt Brehaut did a five metre dive towards the line to even the score. Singapore drew ahead to end the first half 3 - 2. In the second half, the play was evenly matched with Clio Phelan drawing Guernsey level before Singapore took the lead once more and kept it until the last whistle.

GUERNSEY has started its Touch World Cup with two wins and a defeat on the first day of the five day tournament. The event, which is taking place in Edinburgh, has attracted over 100 teams from 28 different nations. Guernsey was originally seeded 10th in the mixed open tournament but the late withdrawal by Fiji and Papua New Guinea saw them jump to ninth. 'It was certainly unexpected. We had planned for games against USA, Australia, England and Belgium and with less than 24 hours to go until the first game, we were redrawn into a pool with New Zealand, Belgium, Italy and Singapore,' said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray. 'Thankfully the Guernsey players took it all in their stride and were definitely ready to play the first game which was a bit special as we were the first team to play on the main grandstand pitch.'

A RECORD number of touch teams is taking part in what is the first league sponsored by FNB. The 2011 FNB Touch Summer League has attracted 39 teams, an increase of two on the entries from last year. Organisers have once again had to add two additional nights of games to ensure all of the fixtures can be played within the 12 week season. ‘Each year we continue to be amazed that new teams coming forward. The enthusiasm for touch in the island continues to grow and we’re now at the stage where we’ll need to cap the number of teams taking part or increase the number of fields we play on. That’s a great position to be in for a sport that began in 2005,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray. ‘We’re also delighted to welcome FNB as the league sponsor. They have made a three year commitment to the sport which will allow us to continue to grow and increase the number of people playing this popular sport.’

GUERNSEY will head to next week’s World Cup with increased confidence after returning from a European tournament with a piece of silverware. Playing under the Green Army name at the GIF club level tournament in Paris, the team won the Mixed Bowl. ‘The team was predominantly our World Cup mixed squad and was the ideal opportunity for us to play at a much higher level than we can when we are training. It was an excellent way for us to practice our attacking moves and our defensive play and identify areas that we need to work on ahead of next week’s World Cup,’ said Guernsey captain Ollie Ward.

GUERNSEY Touch has named a 16 strong squad to represent the island at the Touch World Cup next month. It will be the first time that Guernsey has been represented at the five-day tournament which has attracted more than 100 teams from 28 different countries including Japan, America, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, England, France, Italy and Germany. ‘The 16 who have been chosen have worked incredibly hard over the winter and fully deserve their place in the team. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to represent the island on the world stage and everyone is looking forward to it,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray who will travel to the tournament as team manager.

GUERNSEY will be represented for the first time at the Touch World Cup. Guernsey Touch has confirmed that it will be sending a mixed team to represent the island at the week-long tournament in June. Guernsey will join more than 100 teams from 28 different countries including Japan, America, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, England, France, Italy and Germany. ‘This is an incredibly exciting development for touch in Guernsey. We’ve invested heavily in raising the standard of play over the last few years and feel that the time is right to send a team to represent the island at the World Cup,’ said Guernsey Touch chair Katrina Bray. Last year Guernsey Touch took four teams to represent the island at the European Championship and following the tournament was ranked sixth in Europe.