Ladies encouraged to try out league
THE Mackay and District Women’s Rugby League is hosting a come and try day to generate more interest for a women’s competition in 2014.
Interested players from Proserpine and the Whitsundays are encouraged to head along to the Mackay Junior Rugby League grounds this Sunday from 2-5pm to get involved.
Mackay’s NRL development officers Renae Kunst and Tyson Muscat are the driving force behind the come and try day.
“Women’s rugby league has almost been non-existent here, which is a shame because we’ve got some talented players here who have gone on to play at a high level,” Kunst said.
Kunst, who represents Australia in the national women’s team, the Jillaroos, said the aim of this campaign is to start a six to eight-week women’s competition.
From that, a Mackay team will be selected to contest the North Queensland titles and give girls the chance to be selected to represent North Queensland at the state titles in June.
“The local Mackay women’s comp has struggled in the past couple of years so we are hoping, by having a shorter comp, it might generate some more interest and give girls an opportunity to play representative footy,” Kunst said.
“This, combined with the introduction of a schoolgirls comp this year, we are really hoping we will grow the girls and women’s game in Mackay.”
“Obviously, this is a building phase, but by 2016 we want to have numbers comparable to down south, where both girls and women’s competitions are thriving. With talks of the NRL now hav- ing a high performance unit for the Jillaroos, North Queensland players should be given as much opportunity as they can to strive to be a part of rugby league at the highest level.”
Kunst and Muscat will hold a clinic for female players this weekend.
Kunst said to get the competition up and running she would need solid participation numbers, and was hoping this weekend’s clinic would attract a new batch of players.
“We’re looking at having this clinic to generate some more interest from local girls,” Kunst said.
LEAGUE GIRLS: Local rugby league players Pia Poid, Shanay Taylor and Adeline Poid played in the Mackay All Stars vs. South Sea Islands invitational team in Mackay last year. Women's league will be in focus again this weekend with a come and try day in Mackay on Sunday.