Since beginning her studies in exercise and sport science in the autumn of 2015 at the University of Exeter Poppy has made great strides in the game. During that time she has appeared five times for the England U20 side, figured in six Test matches and has yet to be on the losing side at either level.
Exeter born, she also represented the England U18 team and first represented the older age group against the Army in February 2016. Jo Yapp, a former England player and Poppy’s coach at university, said: “She is someone who has shown great commitment since coming here and is a real team player. Poppy works hard at everything she does and thoroughly deserves to be selected in the senior squad.”
She was previously educated at St Peter’s High School in Exeter, took up the game at the age of 13 and played for Exeter Saracens before joining Bristol. Poppy, an open side flanker, said: “When I was chosen for the U20 side I knew that was the chance to make the most of my opportunities. My best experience so far was playing at Twickenham against Ireland in February last year and winning 13-9! The biggest obstacle in my career was getting over my concussion.
Her path to top level included captaining her county and divisional team and being vice-captain of the U20 side. She loves to cycle “anywhere and everywhere” and watches cycling, too, but her main spectator sport is rugby. Poppy continued: “I listen to music that’s in the charts, love eating cheese and my favourite book is Blue Monday. Coming second in my first triathlon was my proudest non-rugby moment. I reckon that I’m enthusiastic, driven and loud and my friends agree but say I’m a bit boring.”
2016 It(R), I(R), W(R), C(R), F, USA(R)
Last updated: 22 February 2017