Marlins Women vie for further honours
The race is heating up for spots in the revamped Women's rugby league representative pathways.
The North Queensland Marlins Women's Open and Emerging sides will take on the Central Crows teams in Mackay on May 19.
The Open squads will be playing for a spot in the Harvey Norman Queensland Country side which will take part in the National Championships in the Gold Coast from June 1 - June 3.
Marlins coach Alby Anderson said his players had come from all over the far north to be part of the country team trial.
"We've got girls from Mackay, Townsville, Cairns, Innisfail, Atherton; so we're pretty much covering
all over Far North Queensland, and Mt Isa," Anderson said.
Anderson said the championships represented the completion of the Women's pathway from a local and regional competition, all the way up to state and national representation.
"It's important for the Women's game, we know now they've got the NRL pathway so this is a major step forward to getting an NRL contract, hence the emerging sides being picked," he said.
"There's a lot of young girls, 17, 18, 19 year olds that have been picked in that side that have actually been in that North Queensland system since they were 16.
"We're really starting to see that pathway that we started five years ago really flourish with those young ladies coming through.
"Now we've actually got that pathway and we've got consistent rugby league that those women now play and that pathway to get into their regional sides, then up into their state sides and onto their country."
The pathway has raised the standard of the Women's game by giving the Emerging side a clear path of development, and the Open side an achievable goal.
"They're being held in Mackay, and for that first game, the main game, the ladies are vying to be picked in the Queensland Country side to go on and play (in the National Championships)," Anderson said.
"Then going on from there, they'll play against Queensland City to then get picked in the Queensland side to face New South Wales."
Sabteca (Tilly) Fejo
Rangimarie Edwards Bruce