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Development programs a big step in Clark's rise to top

When Brianna Clark swapped the round ball for a Steeden only a few years ago, it was development programs like the recent BHP Talent ID tour that helped shaped the Harvey Norman Queensland Maroons squad member's career.

"I only started playing competitive [rugby league] as a 22-year-old when I transferred over from soccer, but the development camps and clinics have helped shape me as an athlete," the representative forward said.

"Especially recently, going into elite camps like Origin and NRLW really helped me because I was exposed to a professional environment in the camps... so knowing what was expected of me as an aspiring athlete.

"Things like the importance of warms ups, recovery, nutrition and discipline.

"While the BHP Talent ID clinics weren't as intense as the elite camps I've been to recently, they were a great stepping stone in the representative pathway to kick start the careers of the future generation players that were there."

Hosted in Moranbah and Emerald with support from BHP, the clinics gave the opportunity for females in the two regional communities to be exposed to high-level coaching by Brisbane Broncos NRLW coach Kelvin Wright and allowed the young players in attendance to be identified for future representative opportunities, including participation in the new and exciting Harvey Norman Under 19s.

The two sessions also had a personal impact on Clark and fellow North Queensland representative Shaniah Power who was also on hand to assist.

"This trip has shown me how important it is for us experienced players to be involved in developing the game for our younger generation coming through," Clark said.

"It’s actually quite special that we can come along and be there for them and show them that there is exciting pathways to aspire to and they are so capable of doing so.

"There was some impressive talent on display, especially in Emerald.

"I just loved seeing the excitement and willingness to learn and the ability they already had was really promising.

"Even the attitude and talent from some of the girls who hadn’t played league before and chose to come along and learn was inspiring."

Power said she was honoured to meet and work with the next generation of talent coming through.

"It was so special to be able to witness the quality of talent out in the regional towns - especially at the two clinics in Moranbah and Emerald," the North Queensland Gold Star said.

"It’s always exciting to see new talent coming through and I’m honoured to be able to meet and work with the future of rugby league."

Both Clark and Power are gearing up for the 2021 BHP Premiership and are hoping to play for the New Zealand Warriors and Harvey Norman Queensland Maroons again next season.