Southwell Reeling from Origin Selection

Updated: June 14, 2018
NRL Womens Championships  180603_JO6 (363)

Hannah Southwell is set to represent the NSW Blues in the Women’s State of Origin after her outstanding performance at the Women’s National Championships.

Southwell admitted she was surprised at her selection and will relish the opportunity to represent her state; especially alongside her CRL Newcastle team mates Isabelle Kelly, Bec Young and Holli Wheeler.

“It is a huge opportunity; I was not expecting it at all,” Southwell said.

“I love playing with all of them; they’re all very experienced players and have helped me along heaps.

“Bec’s just been awesome helping me out; especially when I played in the forwards at Nationals, she really took me under her wing and let me know what was going on.”

Southwell played League for the Kotara Bears when she was 10 year’s old then tried soccer as well as Rugby 7’s before coming back to League through the CRL Nines last year.

This year she earned herself a starting spot in the CRL Newcastle team that plays in the NSW Harvey Norman Women’s Premiership and was selected to play in the North v South Country Representative trial by her Coach Mick Young.

The 19-year-old said she got a late call-up to compete in the Women’s National Championships earlier this month following her performance in the North v South trial and enjoyed the experience.

“I went into Nationals as the 18th man but Matt put me in the second game against Queensland City and I got to play in the final, which was really cool.

“I’ve never experienced anything like that before; coming from a 7’s background it’s more endurance fitness.

“It was funny because all the girls were whinging about having to play three League games in three days and we play four games in a day in 7’s but by the end of it my body was so sore and I appreciated what they actually meant by it.”

Southwell hopes that expansions of the Women’s pathway in State of Origin, CRL Nines, the Women’s Premiership and the National Championships will inspire the next generation of regional-based female players.

“I hope they get more girls from the Country involved because as everyone saw we won the National Championships and we we’re all from the Country so I hope it will inspire the next generation.

“My sister is coming through the pathway with a few of her mates so it’s really looking up, especially for the Country girls.”

The Women’s State of Origin will be held at North Sydney Oval on the 22nd of June; with NSW Blues v Queensland Maroons kicking-off at 7:40pm.