RUGBY star Maddy Lawrence has died aged 20.
The University of the West of England winger was injured in a recent game and tragically died in hospital.
Lawrence’s club described her as “bubbly”, “fun” and “beautiful”.
And in a touching gesture, UWE Rugby will retire their No.11 jersey as a mark of respect.
A moving statement from the club read: “Celebrating the life of Maddy ‘Twinkle toes’ Lawrence who sadly left us too soon on March 25.
“Maddy exemplified what it means to be a UWE women’s rugby player, ‘approaching’ each new skill with enthusiasm.
“She proudly represented our club on and off the rugby pitch, growing up in the sport and in our rugby family.
“Maddy was a bubbly girl who was so fun to be around.
“Every time she smiled and laughed, you couldn’t help but smile and laugh with her.
“He was the kind of player, friend, sister and daughter that Maddy was.
“Her eternal energy has left its mark on this club, she will forever be our number 11 and forever be our friend.
“We will be retiring the number 11 jersey in honor and remembrance of Maddy.
“Rest in peace our beautiful daughter.”
Following news of the clash, UWE players have asked all women’s rugby teams across the country to cheer one minute before games this weekend.
The club will also launch a fundraising page to raise money for his heartbroken family.
The Rugby Football Union (RFU) has joined UWE in paying tribute to Lawrence.
They tweeted: “On behalf of everyone at the RFU, we send our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Maddy Lawrence.
“The thoughts of everyone in the game are with UWE Women’s Rugby, their players, their members and the wider rugby community.”
Elsewhere, a UWE Bristol spokesperson said: “Everyone in the UWE Bristol community is deeply shocked and saddened by the passing of our student and talented women’s rugby player Maddy Lawrence.
“We would like to send our deepest condolences and sympathy to Maddy’s family, friends and teammates at this very difficult time.
“Other students, university staff and members of the sporting community at UWE Bristol affected by this tragic news can access a full range of university support services offered by our wellbeing department or can contact the helpline. assistance from the Samaritans.”
Tom Monks, head of the UWE Women’s Rugby Union, said: “Maddy has been an absolute pleasure to coach.
“She wanted to learn and relished every opportunity to play that her dedication warranted.
“The unity and togetherness of this year’s team is the strongest I have ever felt in my 20 years of coaching and Maddy’s beaming smile and warmth embodied the incredible bond we have. “