FNRL to grow women’s game

FNRL CEO Don Natabe. Picture: MAIKELI SERU

THE Fiji National Rugby League (FNRL) plans to entice more women in the sport by holding nines tournaments around the country.

The national women’s rugby league team known as the Fiji Bulikula missed out on a spot at the Rugby League World Cup (RLWC) in England this year.

FNRL acting chief executive officer Don Natabe said the inclusion of the women’s category at the Fijian Cup Nines in Sigatoka last week had a positive impact as they target a spot at the 2025 RLWC in France.

“We introduced the nines competition for the women in 2016 in anticipation of the 2017 RLWC,” Natabe said.

“Then we tried to bid for a place at this year’s RLWC but unfortunately could not make it.

“Now we are targeting the 2025 RLWC in France. What that means for us is that it is an incentive for women to take up sports to get to the international stage and rugby league is giving that chance.

“Obviously it is part of our journey of qualifying for the RLWC.

“So to ensure that to happen, we need to have a strong domestic competition for women. This will allow them to come through the right pathway to get into the Bulikula.”

Eight women’s teams from across Viti Levu participated at the Fijian Cup Nines tournament.

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