Pembrokeshire-based rugby team Haverfordwest Ladies are sporting a new kit and a new sponsor having been named the dirtiest sporting team in the UK, after research conducted by laundry appliance brand Belling sought out the filthiest sports kits after every match.
Belling asked squads playing on waterlogged and muddy pitches to submit photos for the chance to win team sponsorship and their own Belling Sensicare washing machine. The winning squad, Haverfordwest Ladies is a Division One team made up of a mix of ages and walks of life – from Mums looking to get back into sport and girls of just 18 keen to get into the game, plus police, teachers, vets, and hospital workers to name a few, beat off stiff competition to be named the dirtiest team in the UK after submitting a photograph of the mud-soaked team post-match.
The group regularly battles muddy and waterlogged conditions, also hindered by the fact that the ladies team plays on a Sunday, after the men’s team uses the pitch on a Saturday – meaning that the ground is already badly-churned by the time the women’s side take to the field.
The team won a sponsorship deal with Belling to provide brand new kits, as well as a Sensicare washing machine to keep those rugby shirts spotless.
It came as no surprise that a Welsh team has won, as Belling’s research also revealed that the muddiest sporting pitches in the UK – where the most matches are rained off or affected by inclement weather – are in Wales.
The study combined Met Office weather data with research amongst grassroots sports clubs across the UK, looking at the number of games rained-off or affected by water-logged pitches.
Belling’s survey found that thousands of football, rugby and hockey fixtures were cancelled every winter in the UK, with the nation’s poor weather being largely to blame.
According to the research, the top ten locations most likely to have a fixture affected by wet weather and poorly maintained pitches were named as:
Jane Rylands, Marketing Manager for Belling UK, said: “We’ve loved undertaking the research into the UK’s muddiest pitches. There are thousands of grassroots clubs across the UK who turn up and play in the very worst weather. Unfortunately, we couldn’t replace all of the waterlogged pitches, but could provide a hard-working, trusty washing machine – one that’ll be tough on mucky footie shirts and hockey shorts. We’ve been helping families cook those memorable meals for so long, and we’re looking forward to supporting kit-washers around the country in removing those tough mud-soaked stains for years to come.”