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Rowland joins Bears Women ranks

Wales international Gemma Rowland has joined Bristol Bears Women for the remainder of the 2020/21 Allianz Premier 15s campaign.

The industrious centre lands in the West Country from fellow Allianz Premier 15s outfit, Wasps Ladies, where she has spent the last eight seasons.

The 32-year-old brings a wealth of experience to the Bristol Bears Women backline having represented Wales in both the 15s and 7s format of the game, notably competing at the Commonwealth Games in 2018, alongside a number of her new teammates.

Rowland has amassed 17 caps for her country since making her debut for Wales in a memorable 13-0 Six Nations victory over the Red Roses in 2015.

Rowland has served in the British Army since the age of 21, which has also provided her the opportunity to represent and captain Army Rugby in both 15s and 7s.

The versatile back links up with her new teammates at Shaftesbury Park with immediate effect.

Co-lead coach Tom Lindsay said: “It’s fantastic that we’re able to acquire a player of Gemma’s talent and experience at this stage of the season - I believe she will add a great deal to the club both on and off the pitch.”

“She’s versatile in being able to play a number of positions across the backline. She adds a new element to our options in the midfield and creates competition amongst the squad.

“Gemma has played a lot of rugby at the top level and she’s done it with number of our current players in the Wales set-up, which has helped her seamlessly settle in and I’m excited to see what’s to come from her in a Bears shirt.”

Rowland added: “I’m delighted to join Bristol Bears Women and get stuck straight in the action here in the West Country.”  

“The club have a brilliant philosophy and I hope my skillset, experience and versatility will add to the arsenal of attacking options in the Bristol Bears backline.

“It was an unexpected change for me after being at Wasps for eight years, but there comes a time when you have to put your physical and mental well-being first, and Bristol Bears is a club that I have always admired, so it was an easy choice for me to come here.

“It’s an incredibly professional set-up at Shaftesbury Park. What the club have built, and are continuing to develop, goes above and beyond and I feel Bristol Bears are driving the operational standards in women’s rugby, which is fantastic to be a part of.”


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