Conroy Shines at NRL Talent ID in Bathurst

Updated: July 19, 2018

Brewarrina Googars League Tag star Janalee Conroy joined a group of Western Women and girls at the National Rugby League Talent ID session in Bathurst last night and caught the attention of the Jillaroos coaches.

Highlighted by hatricks against Bourke and Collarenebri in the latest two Barwon Darling Rugby League rounds, 17-year-old Conroy has scored 10 tries and kicked 11 goals in seven matches to lead the points tally in the BDRL season.

Wednesday’s session was conducted by Jillaroos assistant coach / NRL Elite Female Pathways Manager Jamie Feeney and Australian strength and conditioning coach Simon Buxton.

The pair engaged Western based mentors to assist with the program including Western Rams Ladies coach and Far West Academy League Tag coach Jessica Skinner.

Skinner says Conroy, as well as Parkes Spaceman player India Draper certainly made an impact at the Talent ID, which included a series of tests in speed, agility, power and endurance.

“We had some young girls that turned up for the experience that really shone and were outstanding, so it was quite impressive,” Skinner said.

“We had India Draper in the sprinting test run just as quick as the Jillaroos so that was quite a highlight.

“For Janalee’s age and the limited amount of exposure she’s had to Rugby League, she was definitely a standout.

“Her speed was impressive, but she was not scared to take on the bigger girls that have been playing for a little bit longer so, she definitely has a bright future ahead of her.”

Skinner acknowledged there is room for growth in Conroy’s game and believes with the right coaching and development she may have the opportunity to progress to higher levels of Rugby League in the future.

“Both Jamie and Simon realised she is still quite young, she’s still got a lot of ways to go with her development but there’s good bones there to work with.

“There might be a really good pathway for her with Western Rams and a chance to develop her through that.

“Hopefully in 12 months’ time she might have it all then, being so young, the world’s her oyster in Rugby League.

“To see our girls, particularly Outback and Far West shine it makes me really excited to think that one day we might see one of them up there as a Jillaroo and Janalee is definitely on the right pathway to be that girl.”

Conroy made the shift from Netball to Union then Rugby League two years ago, and says she is inspired by players like Jillaroo and Origin star Isabelle Kelly.

“It started at my school, we made a little team and I started and I really liked it,” Conroy said.

In its third season, the Barwon Darling Ladies League Tag competition continues to build participation and pathway opportunities for women and girls in remote communities.

Brewarrina Golden Googars are sitting second on the ladder heading into the finals and CRL Women’s Participation Officer Kylie Hilder says the introduction of Ladies League Tag, particularly in the Barwon Darling, has been a huge success.

“The introduction of Ladies League Tag into the Barwon Darling has enhanced the community support and spirit for our clubs and we are committed to continuing its development,” Hilder said.

The Brewarrina Golden Googars v Walgett Dragons will play this weekend in Round 10 on Sunday, 22nd July at Geoff New Fields, Brewarrina.