Team Wales will be making their World Cup Debut in December 2014 and everyone is very excited to see them play. Liz Gibson also known as Talula Trouble, was able to answer some questions for me. Team Wales will also be competing in The Road to Dallas this weekend with Scotland, Ireland and West Indies, and are, in fact, the hosts of the event!   Team Wales logo Team Wales logo by Dafydd Williams   How are your training sessions going, have you had to take time from your own league training for Team Wales training?  The team Wales training sessions are very hard work but a lot of fun. We train about twice a month either in South Wales or Gloucester area . I feel I have learnt so much from the coaches and the other skaters. Having such a range of skaters from different leagues provides us with such a great range of strategy and game play, we all get along great and have really bonded over the last few months. My home league the Wirral Whipiteres are very supportive of my training commitment to team Wales. Sadly I have had to take time from training and bouts to try out and train, but my home league have been very accommodating . In addition to Team Wales training, how have you been preparing for the World Cup? To prepare for the world cup I have been using ankle weights at my home league training to build up my endurance and power as well as skating out doors about twice a week (weather permitting). I have also been trying to eat healthier as a result of doing more training. I am interested in doing cross training as a few of our Wales girls cross train by doing yoga/aerobics/gym/swimming etc but finding the time to do that has been difficult so far. How have you been fundraising and achieving sponsorship in order to help with the expense of travelling to Texas? To raise funds for training/funds to attend the world cup I have recently held a cinema night, a mega raffle and coached some local leagues. The cinema night was held at my home leagues local after party venue "Mistys", we had some footage from wwrd vs nwrd and Team Wales vs Blitz dames. Of course we had cake too! For the mega raffle I sold tickets to lots of skaters from a whole range of leagues. Some awesome derby shops such as (bootlegbrawlers, rollerderbycity, grandslam and Queens of the sin bin) and local leagues were very keen to donate prizes to help. I really cant thank them enough! My next fundraising project is to auction off a fully signed Southern Discomfort t-shirt, which the lovely Rolling Thunder organised! What teams are you most looking forward to playing? I'm really looking forward to playing team Germany. I recently saw them at the womens euro's in Belgium, their play was very technical and they worked well together. What are you most looking forward to about the World Cup this year? I am really looking forward playing some of the best skaters in the world. The world cup is the pinnacle of roller derby. To be a part of it is really amazing and I cant wait for the adventure, its a new chapter in my derby life which all skaters dream of. Team Manager Dorkmistress also told me the process involved for Team selection; The UKRDA ran an election process for our Head Coach, Assistant Coach, Lineup Manager and Team Manager. Candidates were asked to apply describing their experience and how they would approach the role. UKRDA member leagues then voted to elect the best candidates. The Management team were elected in two stages in 2013, and we unfortunately had to rerun the elections for Head Coach and Assistant Coach in 2014 as the initial coaches stepped down.
We worked with the UKRDA again to set in place the selection criteria and timetable for the skater selection so that it was comparable across the home nations. We had first round tryouts in South and north Wales in Jan 2014, and the second round tryouts were held in March.  We had 60 skaters try out and we selected 27 for the Training Squad.
Team Wales roster Baby Cheesus Beatrix Blaze of Gory Buccaneer Betty Fear Glenys the Menace Gin n Sonic Haman Jen-Clawed Van Slamme Jolly-Pop Lockhart Marie Bayonet Mort Ireste Optimus Snail Steflon Sleazy Rider Talula Trouble ThunderKat Voodoo Ray Team Manager - D orkmistress Head Coach- Ben Phillips Lineup- Professor Moriarty