Female rugby players threatened with suspension if they oppose competing against men: report – LifeSite

FERGUS, Ontario (LifeSiteNews) – Female rugby players are being threatened not to speak to out regarding a biological male playing against women. 

On August 10, a female player wishing to remain anonymous revealed that Ontario women rugby players are being threatened with suspension to ensure they do not comment on competing against a biological male player on the Fergus Highlanders, going by the name Ash Davis. 

“Any act or behavior that is deemed to be discriminatory and in contravention to these laws and policies, will result in immediate expulsion from the Waterloo County Rugby Club,” Josh Windsor, President of the Waterloo Rugby Club, wrote in an email to female players, according to Rebel News.  

“Any act or behavior that is deemed to be motivated by hate will be immediately reported to police,” he added.  

Similarly, in July, Rugby Ontario told players, “If you are contacted by anyone in the community or the media, please do not engage by offering any opinion or comment on the situation.”  

Rebel News reporter David Menzies commented, “No wonder no one will come forward and utter a response. They’re afraid of the repercussions.” 

The threats seem to be in response to growing concern in the local area over the allowance of a biological male to play against Davis.

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In fact, during a July game, three female players had to be removed from the field and treated for injuries after being tackled by Davis.  

After the game, female players responded to being forced to play against him, revealing that being tackled by Davis felt like being hit by a truck.   

“We are women,” said a female player on the receiving end of a tackle. “It’s a whole other thing playing rugby against men.”  

“I had never been hit like that before, even at the competitive women’s level,” she added. “There was so much more brute force. There are women who are bigger than him, but no girl hits like that. This is a strong human.”   

While the player claimed to be supportive of Davis “transitioning,” she pointed out that allowing him to play against females placed them at a “disadvantage.”  

Davis claims to be “non-binary” and is currently “transitioning” from male to female.  

Unfortunately, forcing female players to remain silent and allowing men to compete against them, is not novel.  

In June, Paula Scanlan, a former teammate of William “Lia” Thomas, revealed that the University of Pennsylvania women’s swim team pressured female swimmers into silence over being forced to swim against Thomas, who is male.    

“There was something going on in that athletic department that wanted to keep us quiet, and I was like, this is getting scary,” Scanlan recalled, explaining that the university made her feel like she was the “problem” for being opposed to Thomas swimming with women.   

Thomas made national news when he was allowed to compete on the University of Pennsylvania’s women’s swim team last year after having represented the men’s squad in the previous three seasons.   

Predictably, Thomas went from being one of the lowest-ranked male swimmers in the country to an above-average female competitor, even winning the 500-yard freestyle national championship.  

However, some sporting organizations have established new policies to protect women. In 2022, the Rugby Football Union (RFU) and the Rugby Football League (RFL) voted to keep biological males out of women’s rugby teams.