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Another accolade for Emma Jensen

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    10 Oct 2017     Getty Images

Jensen has been named in the first women's team to be fielded by England's famous Barbarians Club.

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Well known for its involvement in the men's game where it has been in existence since 1890, the Barbarians club have launched their women's side with the aim of taking women's rugby 'to a different level'. The side will play Munster in November, the first game that will be followed in the future by games against club, provincial and international sides.

Seven different countries will be represented in the first team alongside Jensen, New Zealand's only representative.

They include: Susie Browen (Scotland), Fiona Coghlan (Ireland), Claire Cripps and Megan Goddard (England), Elen Evans (Wales), Christelle Le Duff (France) and Kelly Russell (Canada). The group has 440 international caps between them.

Jensen has played 49 times for New Zealand.

The side will be coached by former World Cup winner from England Giselle Mather.

Mather, who is the Wasps director of rugby said: "The Barbarians are one of the reasons I fell in love with rugby and to be coaching this side is a massive honour.
"The state of the women's game is phenomenal at the moment following events like the World Cup, won by New Zealand in Ireland, and the launch of the Premier 15s in England.

"With the Barbarians coming in on top of that it's taking the game to different level," she said.

Backing for the Barbarians team has come from Britain's Women's Sport Trust.

Barbarians chairman, and manager of the British & Irish Lions in New Zealand this year, John Spencer said the club was delighted to open a new chapter in its history.

"Its formation is something we've been working towards for a number of years and it is a reflection of the excellence of the global women's game which was showcased so brilliantly at this year's Women's Rugby World Cup in Ireland.

"Our aim is to welcome more talented players into this iconic club to forge new friendships and play with the style and passion for which the Barbarians are famous. We are working with clubs and unions around the world to make sure it benefits the players and the game," Spencer said.

World Rugby's general manager women's rugby, Katie Sadleir said: "It's an incredibly exciting development in international rugby to see the first women's Barbarians team being formed. The talented players that have been recruited from around the world for this team provide an excellent opportunity to deliver more inspirational rugby maintaining the momentum created during the recent World Cup in Ireland.

"It is fantastic to see the financial partnerships that have come together to support this historic initiative," she said.