Gay rugby club King’s Cross Steelers, have retained the title of European champions for the third time after winning the 2011 Union Cup.

The biennial tournament – held in Amsterdam on 5 June – saw the London-based club win the XVs section and the second team come runners-up in the Xs section.

In a tense and gripping final, the Steelers XV beat their old rivals the Manchester Spartans who dominated the
opening minutes of play. However, they were beaten by the Steelers, who won by an overwhelming 29-0.

The Steelers X won the runners-up section against the Parisian side Le Coq Festif, in a match that saw the old rivals pitch against each other and fight for the coveted Silver Plate. The French put out an impressive defence but eventually the London side won 27-7.

The tournament was a resounding success for all team members.

Chairman of the Kings Cross Steelers RFC, Tim Sullivan, said: “This is a thrilling triumph for the world’s first gay rugby club. Our success has been due to the sheer hard work and dedication of the players and the support team. So I’d like to personally thank these individuals that helped us win this cup.”