|Squad||Darlington Mowden Park Sharks|
|Weight||65kg (10st 3lb)|
Being one of two debutants who scored a try hat trick in the same match was quite an achievement for Ruth Laybourn. She shared that distinction with fellow wing Lydia Thompson when England kicked off the 2012 FIRA-AER European Cup with a 61-0 win over Spain in Rovereto in May last year. Ruth also played in the second game that brought a 32-8 victory over hosts Italy.
She took up the game only at the age of 22 but had been spotted when eight by Ian Hill, who nurtured her athletics’ skills all the way through to the launch of her rugby career. She said: “Without his support I would not be where I am today.”
Ruth superimposed her scoring skills on to the Sevens arena and ran in six tries overall in the Dubai leg of the IRB Women’s World Series at the end of November 2012. It meant she was the second highest try-scorer in the event behind Emilee Cherry, of New Zealand, who bagged seven. Ruth made touchdowns in the pool matches against South Africa, Brazil (two) and Spain (two) and added another in the 7th/8th place play-offs against the Netherlands.
Six months later, Ruth swept over for another six tries in the final leg of the series in Amsterdam. She scored in five of the six matches and bagged two tries in the 19-0 quarter- final win over France.
She has represented Yorkshire and the North of England in the long jump and 300m hurdles at U15, U17 and U20 level and captained City of York women’s hockey first team from 2009-2011. In the 15–a-side game, she began on the wing, moved to full back and then to outside centre before reverting to the No.11 jersey.
An agricultural ecologist, she works for the Food and Environment Research Agency in York. Ruth attended Badsworth Church of England Junior School, near Pontefract, Wakefield Independent School at Nostell, Wakefield and Ackworth Quaker School before moving on to university.
She gained a BSc (Hons) in Ecology, Conservation and Environment at York, where she subsequently obtained a MRes in Ecology and Environmental Management. Before joining Leodiensian in 2008, Ruth played for her university team and York Railway Institute.
Her rugby mentors have been Andy Watson at the university and York RI and Gordon Piper, of Yorkshire, for whom she has played since 2007. She has also won representative honours for the North and was also the top try-scorer in North League One in 2010-11.
Last updated: May 20, 2013