Main Image: Sorren Owens from Mornington Island with the Mornington Island girls and Jordan Marshall from Burketown who played in the Northern Outback women's team

The Northern Outback Women's team competed for the first time at the North Queensland Women's trials in Townsville recently and showed plenty lots of fighting spirit and gritty determination.

The girls came from Mornington Island, Normanton, Mount Isa and Burketown, so it was a real win just for the team to take the field, as it involved lots of organisation and massive efforts behind the scenes.

Players took a flight to Normanton followed by a 10-hour bus trip to Townsville - and then came the return trip home.

Even though the girls didn't register a win or score a try, they left the grounds with big smiles on their faces and were pleased with their efforts.

Sorren Owens was involved with the Northern Outback team and has helped support rugby league in Mornington Island and Normanton.

He said the team cohesion was challenging to create at first as the girls lived in different regions and had never trained together.

"The Outback girls definitely showed they had the heart and attitude to be good footy players and despite most of the never having played before there were quite a few who showed great potential and talent,"  he said. 

This was the first time for the women to be playing at that level and while there were a handful of players who really impressed, Owens said he felt the whole team had a real bright future in the game with the right opportunities.

On a personal note, Owens said he noticed the big difference in game experience and match fitness of the three other women's teams.

Owens also said while it took some time for the players to bond, he found the more time they spent together, the more he could see a huge improvement in their structure - especially from the first official team training run to the second training session.

"Playing experience and being part of a team and club is great for capacity building and will play an important part in securing future employment," he said.

"The players were challenged and the experience has motivated and inspired them to focus on training early and improving their fitness, cardio strength, diet and maintaining healthy weight levels, so they can be better prepared and competitive for next year's trials."

Sorren Owens with the Northern Outback women's team who played in the North Queensland Women's Championships held recently in Townsville
Sorren Owens with the Northern Outback women's team who played in the North Queensland Women's Championships held recently in Townsville

The Normanton players have decided to keep up a training regime which will be made a lot easier as they have a personal trainer who has moved back to the town and will work with them on fitness, while the Normanton Stingers will put a couple of players through a NRL coaching course.

Talented Northern Outback player, Jordan Marshall from Burketown, was named in the Emerging Marlins team after the trials.

Marshall was a skilled softball player before she discovered a passion for rugby league while helping the local coach at training sessions.

She is also a sports medic and has completed a rugby league coaching course.

Kodi Wright, who lives in Normanton and attended Mareeba State High School, is a good Oz Tag player and her great running skills were evident on the park.

Participation in women's rugby league is gaining popularity in remote communities and Mr Owens said he hopes QRL will continue to promote and support the development of the greatest game of all.