Evans and Bradbury make their mark on distant shores


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Oban international rugby stars Abi Evans and Magnus Bradbury have made a huge impact on their respective current overseas debuts.

It was a historic day for Scotland Women on Monday as they not only played their first match in the Southern Hemisphere, but also recorded one of their biggest victories in a decade.

Starting the first of two test matches against the Springboks in Cape Town on the bench, 23-year-old Abi brought fresh legs to the game in the 60th minute and made her presence felt immediately.

With the Scots leading 37-5, the former Oban High School pupil was pulled into touch one metre shy of the line as she dove for the corner. It was to be second time lucky for Abi though as she crossed the whitewash two minutes later following a break and offload by teammate Konkel.

With the match drawing to a close, Abi doubled her try tally by going over in the final play of the game to take the final score to 47-5.

Speaking to The Oban Times before she left for South Africa last Friday, Abi said: ‘I am really excited to be heading out to South Africa this weekend.

‘They are going to be tough matches as South Africa are just one spot above us in the rankings but we are all ready for the challenge and excited by the opportunity.

‘The tour will also allow for plenty of time for us to spend together as a team.

‘This season we have a new coach and that has brought with it a new energy. We have had a couple of full squad training sessions with Philip Doyle and I am looking forward to getting to the pitch in South Africa.’

Now living in Newcastle, Abi has just started studying sports science at Northumbria University and plays her club rugby with Tyrrells Premier League team Darlington at Mowden Park.

Glencoe’s Helen Nelson is captaining the squad in South Africa following a successful season as captain of the Scotland Women 7s squad earlier this year.

The second test is on Saturday October 5 at 2pm (BST).

Also on Monday, Magnus Bradbury impressed during Scotland’s second World Cup match against Samoa in Kobe, Japan.

Replacing Hamish Watson as blindside flanker, Magnus played a key defensive role in the national side’s 34-0 victory which puts Gregor Townsend’s men back in with a fighting chance of making the quarter-finals.

Scotland play Russia on Wednesday October 9, then pool leaders Japan on Sunday October 13.