Press Release – Wellington Rugby Football Union
Made up of 30 girls aged 10 to 13 from Wellington, Porirua and the Hutt Valley, the Rugbygirl Wellington Whirlwind is a brand new junior girls Wellington provincial rugby team set to play an excitng home and away series against a Manawatu junior girls team.
The games will be curtain raisers for the Manawatu vs Taranaki Womens NPC game in Palmerston North on Saturday, and for the Wellington Pride vs Manawatu in Petone a week later on Saturday 14 September.
Coached by WRFU School Girls Rugby Coordinator Lesley McKenzie, the girls are “ so enthusiastic and are very skilled” Most play rugby in mixed teams on Saturdays.
“However, part of my job is to organise girls’ rugby in schools and we’re seeing a huge untapped demand” says McKenzie.
“So many young girls want to play rugby, and now with the Wellington Whirlwind, they can see a path which enables them to represent their province, just like the boys have”.
“In fact it’s be:er because, unlike the boys, these girls get to have a cool road trip!” Working closely with the WRFU to establish the Whirlwind has been Pōneke Football Club.
“We want lots more women and girls to play rugby” says Pōneke Chairman Kevin Jenkins.
“We re–established our women’s team this year and are thrilled that one player, Helena Lawrence, has been selected for the Wellington Pride in her first year of rugby”.
“A quarter of the girls (7) in the Whirlwind play rugby for Pōneke, and we‘re keen to give them the same opportuniDes to represent Wellington that our boys have”.
“We’ve been frustrated over the years watching outstanding junior girls not geang picked to play for rep teams.
Rather than whinge about it, we decided to work with the WRFU to form a girls team”.
“We’re so pleased to have been able provide not only a highly experienced woman assistant coach and help with management, but also to make our faciliDes available for the team to meet and train”.
“Rugbygirl is thrilled to be able to sponsor the Wellington Whirlwind” says Rugbygirl CEO Dave Phillipson.
“Women’s rugby is taking off around the world, especially with 7s now in the Olympics for 2016”.
“This sponsorship fits neatly with our sponsorship of the naDonal college girls finals in Palmerston North on the weekend that the Wellington Whirlwind play their first game, i.e. the 7th and 8th of September”.