The Canberra Region Rugby League has announced it will run three separate women’s rugby league competitions in 2016, including the introduction of a women’s league tag competition with teams from the Austbrokers Canberra Raiders Cup competition.
For the first time in the competitions history, five out of the nine teams from the senior Canberra competition will feature league tag teams, with the Woden Valley Rams, Tuggeranong Bushrangers, Yass Magpies, Goulburn Workers Bulldogs and Belconnen United Sharks competing on the same day and at the same venue as their clubs senior sides.
The George Tooke Shield will continue the success of their league tag competition with six teams affiliated with their men’s teams, with Crookwell, ADFA, Boomanulla, Bungendore, Harden and Gunning fielding teams.
There has also been a two team increase to the under 18’s rugby league women’s competition with the Belconnen United Sharks and Yass Magpies joining Gungahlin Bulls, Valley Dragons, Tuggeranong Buffaloes and Goulburn Stockmen. The age division has also increased from under 17’s to under 18’s to help boost the competition.
General Manager, Canberra Region & Community Rugby League Mark Vergano said the increase in female participation is essential for the sport in the region and expected the game to trend upwards in participation over the coming years.
“The sport of rugby league is undergoing a transformation where we are expanding, we have doubled the size of the league tag competitions between the regional and Canberra areas and also our under 18’s women’s tackle competition will increase to 6 teams,” Mr Vergano said. “We are very excited and it shows the changing face of Rugby League with the increased support of the Canberra Raiders and CRRL to Women’s Rugby League.”
Mr Vergano also announced today that ACT Minister for Sport & Recreation and Minister for Women, Yvette Berry, has been named Patron for Women’s rugby league in the region.
“Having the Minister for sport in the ACT is not only a validation of what we are doing, but is also very important in what we do in Canberra with the fantastic and inclusive environment we provide for the sport,” he said. “We look forward to having Minister Berry supporting Women’s rugby league and can’t wait to have her at some matches this season.”
The first matches of both the Women’s Canberra Raiders Cup League Tag and Under 18’s Women’s rugby league are set to kick-off this weekend. The George Tooke League Tag competition commenced on April 9.