Leia Smith, aged 12, has become the first ever female winner of the Harper Shield, an award given by the club over the last 23 years for displays of exceptional leadership qualities.
Leia is a regular at first team matches and training sessions, has been a club mascot, plays with the girls’ team and the P7s’ squad, and has generally been a good team worker and club ambassador.
She also picked up most improved player award this year, as voted by the supporters.
A pupil at St Ninians Primary School in Cardenden – who’ll be starting at St Andrew’s High after the summer – Leia took up rugby around the age of four, encouraged by her brother Keir, and played with the Mini Micros.
After a break, she came back to Balwearie Road a couple of years ago and has made various contributions to the Blues, on and off the pitch.
Described as “a high achiever” by dad Gavin (pictured with her on the back page), Leia hopes to represent Scotland at rugby, professionally or at least at a very high level, while she is also an accomplished martial artist and has just been double graded at karate.
The Harper Shield bears the names of Kirkcaldy rugby enthusiasts who’ve gone on to play for Glasgow and Edinburgh, or made another notable impact on the game, so Leia has joined an impressive roster.
Gavin said thanks were due to main coach Colin Parsons and his assistants for all their encouragement.