New girls' league side ready for season

The Otago under-16 girls rugby league team after the side beat Waikato at a nines tournament in...
The Otago under-16 girls rugby league team after the side beat Waikato at a nines tournament in Auckland in April. PHOTO: SUPPLIED
The Otago under-16 girls rugby league side is not lacking for help as the business end of the season comes around.

The side is set to play its first proper game this weekend, taking on Southland, but has been training for more than two months to get ready for its main mission.

There are also Otago under-14 boys, under-16 boys and under-18 boys sides turning out this season as the sport continues to grow throughout the region.

Some of the players in the girls’ side have been playing for a couple of years while a few are new to the game.

Coach Jess Hannah-Brennan has been working hard with the side as the players mix their development in the 13-player game with other winter sports.

Many of the players also play rugby union and have found the skills developed there transfer to the other oval ball game.

The team has been lucky enough to also be helped by Otago Whalers coach Dave Reedy, who is a highly rated coach in league circles, having won the national title with the Whalers in the past couple of years.

A few weeks ago the team, and other young players in the South, had a development day with coaches from New Zealand Rugby League.

Included among those was former dual international Shontayne Hape, who works as a development officer with New Zealand Rugby League.

The side, along with the three boys teams, are set to head to Christchurch on July 10-12 to play in a South Island age group tournament.

Canterbury will start as the team to beat while there are also set to be teams from Southland, West Coast and Aoraki.

The game for the girls will be at Bishopscourt this Sunday, kicking off at 12.30pm.



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