The Group Three/Hastings League Women’s nines competition got underway late last month.
With recent participation statistics revealing an annual increase of 28 per cent in female participation across Country Rugby League (CRL), women’s participation officer Kylie Hilder said the competitions were the perfect opportunity for new or returning players to get involved in the game.
“We’ve been inundated with requests for CRL women’s nines competitions after the success of last year and events like the Women’s State of Origin and NRL Women’s Premiership have obviously helped to increase exposure in the women’s game,” Kylie said.
“The addition of women’s tackle into next year’s Country Championships has created a pathway for players who participate in the nines to push for selection in the Country Women’s National Championship side and possibly State of Origin or NRL Women’s Premiership representation – so the opportunities are there if you want to get involved.”
Four teams are contesting the under 13s - Taree Panthers, Wauchope, Lake Cathie and Port Macquarie.
In the under 15s, six teams will take the field.
The Taree derby will headline week one with a clash between the Panthers and Red Rovers. Wingham, Wauchope, Port Macquarie and Port City round out the draw.
The Panthers will fly the flag for the Manning in the under 17s. They’ll meet Port Macquarie, Port City and Wauchope.
Taree Panthers junior rugby league president Doug Ferguson said the sides are ready to rip in.
A host of sides will contest the open’s competition. Old Bar, Forster-Tuncurry and Wingham will take part, as will Port City, Kendall, Lower Macleay and Beechwood.
The six week competition runs until December 1. Games will be held at Lank Bain Sporting Complex in Wauchope.
Women’s nines competitions will be held across NSW including in Group Two, Illawarra District, Northern Rivers and Central Coast / Hunter.