Katherine's women's rugby league team needs more players to survive

MORE PLAYERS NEEDED: Eseta Sua, Annie Turner, Natasha Aassan, Tamika Fisher, Leelan Payne and Jan Mott at Monday night training.
MORE PLAYERS NEEDED: Eseta Sua, Annie Turner, Natasha Aassan, Tamika Fisher, Leelan Payne and Jan Mott at Monday night training.

The new Katherine Women’s Rugby League team is in danger of falling through the cracks with low numbers. 

At the beginning of the year the 16 and Up women’s team attracted lots of interest with about 57 signing up.

But Katherine Rugby League president, Nathan Rosas said that numbers have quickly dropped. 

“If we don’t have ladies turning up to training and especially the Sunday games we’ll eventually have to pull the pin,” he said. 

“We have a lot of support from the coaches and the union, it is just a case of not enough girls.” 

Currently six women have paid the registration fees, and a few others turn up to the weekly training. 

TRAINING TIME: The team start off training with some passing drills.

TRAINING TIME: The team start off training with some passing drills.

The Sunday games, held after the boy’s games at the Katherine Sportsground, hardly ever attract enough players to actually have a game though, Mr Rosas said. 

Head Coach Jack “Kook” Garla, said this first year is about learning the fundamentals of the sport. 

“We are not going to throw our ladies against a Darwin team that has been playing for years,” Mr Garla said. 

The idea is to split the team into two: The Pink Panthers and The Blue Jays, so they can play against each other.  

Mr Garla said the women need to play as a one team competition until they have the skill set to take on more experienced teams. 

Currently, the costs to Katherine Junior Rugby League are not being covered. 

Mr Garla said low participation is likely to be a combination of high registration fees and busy lives. 

COACH: Jack "Kook" Garla is getting the women game ready, but that can only happen with more players.

COACH: Jack "Kook" Garla is getting the women game ready, but that can only happen with more players.

“The whole league suffers from not enough girls being able to play,” he said. 

Katherine Rugby League president, Mr Rosas is hoping the team will eventually attract enough players to have 13 women for both the pink and blue team. 

From there he would like to be able to pick a representative team. 

“Previously, we ran an U14s girl’s competition in Katherine, but there weren’t enough players to keep it going. 

“We will keep pushing forward. 

“If we can get women playing again it will bring a lot of interest in Women’s Rugby League back into Katherine. 

“The team is in jeopardy of falling through the cracks if we don’t get enough players,” Mr Rosas said. 

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