The Straffe Ketten brought the Union Cup 2015 to Brussels for the first time, from May 21st to May 25th. With more than 800 participants. it was the biggest amateur rugby event in the Brussels region in 2015 and the biggest achievement in the Straffe Ketten history.

The Union Cup is a rugby competition celebrated every two years which brings together all European gay and inclusive rugby teams in one city for a long weekend. The objective of the Union Cup is to provide a rugby competition at all levels where the LGBT rugby community and its allies and supporters can compete, bond and celebrate the achievements of the past months.

The competition consisted in two consecutive days of games. On Friday the teams played in pools to be distributed in three categories, and on Saturday there were three competitions, the Cup, the Plate, and the Bowl, on a qualifying scheme among teams of a similar level.

Besides the sport competition, the social aspect was an important part of the project. Since these social activities were taking place and visible for everyone in the very heart of Brussels, the Union Cup fully valorised Brussels as host city and as an ideal venue for international events. With the support of the business community of Brussels, a complete programme was organised every day, from Thursday till Monday, offering cultural and leisure activities including opening and closing ceremonies, thematic parties, city tours, and a rugby village at the heart of the city, where teams celebrated achievements and shared the rugby culture and traditions with every Brussels citizen interested.

It was organised by a team of volunteers composed by our own player, our loved supporters, and volunteers from other Brussels’ associations which offered their help; Omnya and BGS

The fact that Brussels hosted the 10th anniversary of the Union Cup was reflected as well in a special logo for the occasion, a commemorative trophy offered to the founding team “Les Valents de Montpellier” who hosted the first Union Cup tournament in 2005, and a look back at the evolution of the tournament in the past years in our information booklet. 

The Union Cup 2015 Brussels in some numbers

The Union Cup 2015 Brussels broke the records in participation. It had 24 teams coming from 11 European nations, and a total of more than 800 players coming from many different countries, including non-European countries.

In the two days of competition  a total of 45 matches were played (to compare, the 6 nations has a total of 15 matches, and the Rugby World Cup 2015 had a total of 48 matches).

The Union Cup attracted  the attention of more than 10 national and international TV and radio stations, and the event got a wide coverage in newspapers and magazines from all over Europe. Online media also covered the event with detail with more than 10 articles focusing on the inclusive aspect of the tournament and reporting both the results of the competition and the highlights of the social activities that took place in Brussels.

It was made possible by the work of 100 volunteers from the Brussels LGBT community and the collaboration of many sponsors and supporting institutions. We could have never made it without your support!

Want to know about the next Union Cup? It will be hosted by the Madrid Titanes team and this is their website.