Plan to keep girls on the rugby league field
GIRLS are well represented on the junior rugby league fields of Gladstone, plenty getting in and tackling as hard as the boys.
That is, only up until the age of 12.
When they arrive at under-13s, the female contingent are not allowed to play with the boys anymore because of national rules.
They need to stop playing because Gladstone does not have a competition running for girls.
Coach Rod Dahl wants to change the landscape, starting with a representative team for the under-16 age group this year.
His hope is to get enough interest this year to grow the sport in girls over the next couple of years and then create a competition.
It would mean the players leaving after under-12s would have somewhere to play and would not be lost from rugby league forever.
"Hopefully down the track we can get some teams, then the future is looking bright," he said.
"The enthusiasm sometimes far outweighs that of the boys, and we are losing the players."
The transformation starts this Thursday at 4.30pm.
Dahl is inviting all girls aged under 14-16 to a trial day for a Gladstone Junior Raidettes team.
If successful in making the Gladstone side, girls would play a weekend on June 6 and 7 against Central Highlands and Rockhampton trying to make the Capras team.
Dahl thinks anyone, successful or not, would learn enough to want to play on a regular basis.
He said it would be the first time a team like this had been created in Gladstone.
Previously a one-off trial session was the only way our girls could make a central Queensland side.
The under-12 Port Curtis girls' side loved the idea.
Many said they would play in the team in the future.
But even better, they want it to work so they can keep playing and not have to find another sport.
"We want you to help us," they screamed as a group, urging all teenage girls to get involved.
- Gladstone Junior Rugby League fields
- Contact Rod Dahl: 0448813666 or email@example.com