Grizzlies become members of international gay rugby association

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The International Gay Rugby Association and Board (IGRAB) has voted to admit the Nashville Grizzlies Rugby Football Club to their group as associate members.

The Grizzlies and the Newcastle Ravens (UK) were informed of their acceptance on May 15. They now join 36 other clubs in the United States, Canada, South America, the British Isles, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand. 

Doug Sladen, president of Grizzlies, considers IGRAB membership an important milestone in the club’s development.

“Membership in IGRAB has been one of our goals from the beginning," Sladen said. "Achieving it confirms all our hard work over the last year. We look forward to playing more IGRAB teams in the fall.”

Every other year, IGRAB coordinates the Bingham Cup, an international tournament for gay rugby clubs named for Mark Bingham a gay rugby player from San Francisco and one of the heroes of 9/11. The next Bingham Cup takes place in Dublin Ireland in the summer of 2008.

With regular season matches over, the Grizzlies have begun preparation for summer sevens tournaments in which seven players instead of the usual fifteen play quick matches. The Grizzlies will play in the Southern Fried Sevens tournament in Atlanta June 22-24 during Atlanta Pride.

For more information about the Grizzlies, go to www.GrizzliesRugby.org.