Buller To Debut For CRL Newcastle

Updated: May 10, 2018
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Picture courtesy of — The Newcastle Herald 

Newcastle Knights Tarsha Gale Cup Captain Sophie Buller will take the next step on her rugby league pathway this weekend after being selected to make her debut in the Harvey Norman NSW Women’s Premiership with CRL Newcastle.

Having led the Knights to the Grand Final in their inaugural season, 17-year-old Buller will not only line-up against some of the best players from Regional NSW; but also her idol – Australian Jillaroos Bec Young.

“I’m super keen, just to be able to learn from them and of follow in their footsteps,” Buller said.

“Bec Young is my idol, so I want to work with her and do what she does and hopefully wear the green and gold soon.”

Buller moved her whole life down from Coffs Harbour four years ago, to play representative soccer for the Newcastle Jets.

“When I went to the National titles they told me I was too short to play soccer and that I’d never play for Australia again.”

Buller trained with the North Newcastle Blue Bags last season but was unable to compete because of her age; Buller spent last season playing for the Cronulla Sharks before learning that a Newcastle side was forming for the Tarsha Gale Cup this year.

“As soon I was finished with the Tarsha Gale I was going to go straight into the West Newcastle under-18’s team in the CRL Central Hunter Combined Women’s Competition.

“I was going to play in the local league to keep developing and build my skills.

“Next year I was going to have a shot at the CRL Newcastle team, but it’s amazing that I’ve got the call up now.”

Only five girls, including Buller, from the Knights Tarsha Gale Cup side had ever played in a full tackle competition before the season began; the rest of their experience coming from competing in the Central Coast-Hunter and Group 21 CRL Women’s Nines in September 2017.

Having benefitted from the new pathways being created for Women’s Rugby League, Buller believes the introduction of the CRL Central Hunter Combined Women’s Competition; which features over 700 players competing across Under-14, 16, 18 and Open-Age divisions – will help to improve the standard of football in her region and in the Tarsha Gale Cup.

“There is a huge amount of talent in the Newcastle area, even the school’s competitions that we play in are on par with the Sydney competitions so it is really looking good for us.

“There is such young, and up and coming talent here in Newcastle and this new competition will build the girls confidence and hopefully they can start stepping up to the Tarsha Gale.

The Wentworthville Magpies v CRL Newcastle will take place at Leichhardt Oval and will kick-off at 3:00pm on Saturday, 12th May.

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