|Weight||63kg (9st 12lb)|
La Toya was brought up in Auckland in New Zealand but was proud to represent England courtesy of her four grand parents who were all born on English soil (or more accurately in a hospital which had been built on English soil).
She moved to England in 2009 and in a twist of fate, she made her England debut against the Kiwis later that year. Unsurprisingly, she remembers her debut as the proudest day of her rugby life, made even more special that a few of her close friends were playing for the opposition on the same day.
Now a firm fixture in the England set-up, La Toya (the second person with that name to appear in google after Michael’s sister, La Toya Jackson), works as an RFU Community Coach, working across the Wandsworth and Kingston areas of Surrey. She delivers coaching sessions at schools and clubs as well as attending junior matches at weekends when time allows. La Toya has a passion to encourage the young people of the area to get into rugby. Her personal experience demonstrates just what can be achieved. After all, La Toya didn’t take up the sport herself until she was 13 years of age. “It’s a great honour to represent the England team,” she says, “and to engage with young people at the grassroots of the game, too. If I can inspire just one person to develop a love of the game, I can feel proud that I’ve done by job. I want to be an on-going part of developing women’s rugby.”
La Toya has a diploma in Sport and Recreation and admits that in spite of her desire to promote the sport in this country, that her own mentors all hail from Down Under. Vania Lavea was a friend who gave her rugby guidance (something she is now giving to others here),Tana Umaga, the former All Back, is her most admired men’s player while her favourite ground is Liston Park in Auckland. We can hardly blame her for that.
Last updated: February 24, 2014