Albury 9’s Set for Biggest Year Yet

Updated: August 9, 2019
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The Albury Women’s 9’s competition will enter its third consecutive year this October and Albury President Rick O’Connell is expecting it to attract a record number of teams.

O’Connell says the response for this year’s competition has been overwhelming and to keep up with demand in the area, they have introduced a new age group.

“It’s been growing each year, last year we had ten Opens teams and six Under-16’s teams and this is the first time we’ve had an Under-14’s division,” O’Connell said.

“Last year we had teams from Bomaderry, Canberra, Riverina, Victorian-based sides and a team called Central Storm, which is made up of a sprinkle of players from places like Mudgee, Bathurst and Orange.

“There’s definitely been more interest this year; I’ve had more phone calls and I know at least two new local teams are going to enter this year – Darlington Point Coleambally and a Riverina Indigenous team called Riverina Sisters.

“I’ve also had interest from Budgewoi, North Newcastle and St Claire in Penrith, which is fantastic.

“Riverina won the Women’s Country Championships this year, so there’s certainly a good standard.

“As time goes on the standard will improve further and we may go from a 9 aside to an 11 aside as numbers increase.”

Players like NSW Country Representatives Tess Staines and Takilele Katoa, who has now signed with the St George Illawarra Dragons in the NRLW, have competed in the tournament in the past and O’Connell believes their success has inspired the next generation of regionally-based female players.

“It’s just awesome that they’ve been able to follow the pathways through.

“I think that’s one of the things that encourages more women to become involved.

“They’ve been able to see that progress and the success those girls have had.”

The Albury Women’s 9’s will run from Friday, 11th October to Sunday, 13th October at Greenfield Park. If you would like more information or to enter a team, contact Rick on 0408 431 087 / alburythunderrl@gmail.com .

 

Albury 9s

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