It is undeniable that we are approaching a very special round of football, which will run in Round 10 of the NRL season (May 16-19), and you should tell all your friends!
It’s time to get talking about the Women in League Round. Here at Ladies Who League we are planning a massive celebration. We don’t want to ruin it, but keep your eyes on the site over the next two weeks, it’s going to be worth the wait.
I’m not the only one celebrating.
The NRL are also celebrating with some new initiatives for the round.
First of all, more than 130 women will take part in the NRL’s inaugural leadership workshop series this month. This was announced along with the Wellbeing and Balance Workshop, which is the start of an ongoing program led by the NRL to invest in the fastest growing area of influence in the game – women.
There will be four workshops held all across Eastern Australia, including in Wollongong and on the Sunshine Coast.
NRL chief operating officer Jim Doyle stressed the importance of this new initiative, saying that “it is important for women and girls to be able to get involved in the game and make them feel proud of their role and their contribution to rugby league”.
If you don’t believe me when I say that women are fastest growing area of influence in the game, here are some stats that might change your mind:
· Female player registrations have increased 66 per cent over the last 12 months
· 40% of club positions are held by women
· There are six women in NRL club board positions at the Broncos, Cowboys, Rabbitohs, Sea Eagles, Titans and Warriors
· 39% of NRL fans are women
· Throughout 1300 grassroots clubs, more than 2500 women hold senior volunteer positions in 2014
· The number of female coaches continues to rise, with 265 in 2014
· There are 19 countries around the world where women plan rugby league including Australia, France, England, Papua New Guinea, Samoa and Russia.
There has also been much to celebrate in the last 12 months.
Significant achievements include Castle’s appointment as CEO of the Bulldogs and the appointment of Corene Strauss as Men of League CEO. Rebecca Frizelle is now the Titans Board Chair and Linda Burney is the ARL Indigenous Council Chair.
The Jillaroos won the Women’s Rugby League World Cup for the first time and we won the Trans-Tasman series in all three divisions last month. Kasey Badger and Belinda Sleeman have also become the first female referees to be included in the full-time elite match officials squad.
But we still have a long way to go. So as we start the lead up to a sensational round of football, remember the series of ways women influence the game and then … tell a friend!
Mary Konstantopoulos is a lawyer, sports advocate and proud owner and founder of the Ladies Who empire, including Ladies who League, Ladies who Legspin, Ladies who Lineout and Ladies who Leap. You can find her podcast on iTunes.
The annual end-of-year Test between the New Zealand Kiwi Ferns and Australian Jillaroos begins its existence this weekend in Auckland. This is The Roar‘s guide to streaming the match online or watching it on TV.
The Women’s Rugby League World Cup will conclude with a traditional grudge match between the Australian Jillaroos and New Zealand. This is The Roar’s guide to the World Cup grand final and how to watch it live.
It’s true what they say – there is no rugby league offseason. No matter the time of year there’s always something to keep us entertained whether it be signing news, announcements from our clubs or movements at rugby league central.