ENGLAND LIONS GOLD HAT TRICK
England Lions kept all three Six Nations titles at home. They won the finals in the men's Six Nations Tournament, the Women's Home Nations and 'B' Team Tournaments to complete a hat-trick of tournament wins in Chester.
For 2013, the Home Nations has been expnded into the Six Nations Tournament. Ireland Celts have formally become part of this competition and France have been added for the first year. This gave all nations more playing time and opportunities to compete against national teams at different stages of development.
England Lions started their defence of the Six Nations competition in a less than distinguished manner, losing 3-7 to Wales Dragons. They recovered their composure in the following matches recording two 10-0 victories and two by 8 games to 2. Wales failed to capitalise on their good start, losing 4-6 to N.I. Knights in their next match.
England posted a 6-0 win over N.I. Knights in the semi-final but they were then pushed to the limit against Scotland Highlanders in the Final. After winning the first two game to take a 4-0 lead Scotland stormed back to level the score at 4-4 and take the match into the fifth game. Lions triumphed by three players to one to take the last game and run out as 6-4 winners.
Ireland Celts won their first ever international match in Round One, defeating France 8-2 in their tournament opener. Unfortunately, they could not repeat the win in any of their other four matches.
England Lions Women dominated the Women's Home Nations Tournament. They won all three Round One encounter by the maximum 10-0 score and then recorded 6-0 victories over N.I. Knights Women in the semi-final and by the same score against Wales Dragons Women in the Final.
Northern Ireland Knights Women contested the bronze medal match against Scotland Highlanders Ladies. In the Round One group matches Scotland had won convincingly by a score of 7-3, but the 3rd Place Match went all the way. The Knights Women started well, winning the first two games before Highlanders could get on the board by winning game 3, the fourth was drawn and Scotland levelled the match by winning the fifth convincingly. This took the match into a one minute Over-Time game. N.I. went ahead early in the game and hung on to win their bronze medals by a two player advantage (5-3). This was the only medal won by either of the Irish teams.
England Lions B won all three of their Round One matches. In the semi-final they came up against France, who had gone into the 'B' competition with Ireland after the teams had finished 5th & 6th in the Six Nations event. They outgunned the talented but inexperienced French team winning in three straight games. In the Final they were given a shock by Scotland's B team, losing the first game but bouncing back to win the next three and secure the B competition gold medals.
Dreigiau Cymru (Wales Dragons B) defeatd France in three straight games to win 3rd place.