Charlotte Pearce’s progression through the England ranks is all the more exceptional given she only took up rugby at university aged 18.
Less than seven years later, she was named as part of England Women’s squad before making her full Red Roses debut in the opening game of the 2018 Six Nations as a replacement in the 42-7 win over Italy in Reggio Emilia.
The Wrexham-born back – who can play at full back or on the wing – started playing the game in her first year at Edge Hill University and joined her first club, Ormskirk, the following season.
Charlotte had no rugby background, no-one else in her family plays the game, but after spells with Waterloo Ladies, Lichfield Ladies and postgraduate study at Loughborough University, she earned a contract with Loughborough Lightning.
She was a frequent try-scorer for the Lightning in the inaugural season of the Tyrrells Premier 15s, leading to regular national training camp call-ups in 2017. Her fine try against Harlequins in September 2017 was a particular highlight, beating six defenders for a memorable individual effort.
She thrived under the guidance of head coach Rhys Edwards at Loughborough and also cites Lichfield coach Richard Bennett as a key influence in her career.
Described by England head coach Simon Middleton as “dynamic, abrasive and full of energy,” Charlotte also achieved a black belt in karate aged 11 and was subsequently named in an England squad for sparring at 14.
2018 It(R), W
Last updated: 12 February 2018