The 5th Women’s Rugby League World Cup kicks off this Tuesday and it’s looking like it will be the biggest yet. Hosted by Australia and televised on Channel 7, here’s everything you need to know to follow it.
The Jillaroos are one of the most well-known national women’s rugby league teams. They’ve competed in the 5 world cups, and won the 2013 World Cup.
These girls have been training hard and are hoping to take out yet another title. Players to watch include this year’s Female Dally M player Simaima Taufa, and retiring players Steph Hancock, and Renae Kunst, who will want to go out on a high.
Team: Kezie Apps (Helensburgh, NSW), Chelsea Baker (Wallabies Gladstone, QLD), Heather Ballinger (Wests Panthers, QLD), Annette Brander (Beerwah Bulldogs, QLD), Brittany Breayley (Brothers Ipswich, QLD), Sam Bremner (Helensburgh, NSW), Ali Brigginshaw (Brothers Ipswich, QLD), Karina Brown (Easts Tigers, QLD), Nakia Davis-Welsh (Redfern All Blacks, NSW), Vanessa Foliaki (Easts Tigers, NSW), Steph Hancock (Easts Tigers, QLD), Isabelle Kelly (North Newcastle, NSW), Renae Kunst (Wests Panthers, QLD), Corban McGregor (Cronulla-Caringbah, NSW), Caitlin Moran (North Newcastle, NSW), Lavina O’Mealey (Redfern All Blacks, NSW), Talesha Quinn (Cronulla-Caringbah, NSW), Ruan Sims (Cronulla-Caringbah, NSW), Maddie Studdon (Redfern All Blacks, NSW), Zahara Temara (Burleigh Bears, QLD), Simaima Taufa (Mounties, NSW), Elianna Walton (Greenacre, NSW), Meg Ward (Northern Territory, NT), Rebecca Young (North Newcastle, NSW).
Prediction: 1st. I can’t see anyone beating the skill and strength of an experienced Jillaroos side
Papua New Guinea
The Orchids played their first international game in the opener to the Prime Ministers XIII, and are following it up with their first women’s World Cup. A rugby league loving nation, their inclusion is fantastic for international rugby league.
After a heavy loss to the Jillaroos in September, these girls now have some experience under their belt and will be ready to prove a point. Maima Wei, Amelia Kuk and Cathy Neap played fantastic against a skilled Jillaroos, and will be players to watch.
Team: Elvinah Aaron (Southern), Helen Abau (Southern), Delailah Ahose (Southern), Della Audama (Southern), Akosita Baru (Northern), Christie Bulhage (Highlands), Brenda Goro (Southern), Carol Humeu (Southern),Shirley Joe (Northern), Martha Karl (Northern), Gloria Kaupa (Highlands), Naomi Kaupa (Southern), Amelia Kuk (Brisbane, Australia), Joan Kuman (Southern), Grace Mark (Northern), Mala Mark (Highlands), Janet Michael (Southern), Cathy Neap © (Southern), Anne Oiufa (Highlands), Vanessa Palme (Southern), Fay Sogavo (Highlands),Jazmyn Taumafai (Brisbane, Australia), Vero Waula (Southern), Maima Wei (Southern).
Prediction: The Orchids are a talented team, but are relying on training together as their main experience, I can’t see them making the Final, but missing out at 4th.
The newest team in the World Cup, the Ravens are building up women’s rugby league in America.
Canada have one game under their belt, against Illawarra Country premiers the Corrimal Cougars, which they lost, leaving them yet to play at an international level. Players such as Barbara Waddell, Tiera Reynold sand Valerie Wideski stood out in the test and will follow suit in the World Cup.
Team: Maira Acevedo (British Columbia), Gillian Boag (British Columbia), Nina Bui (Ontario), Andrea Burk (British Columbia), Christina Burnham (British Columbia), Mackenzie Fane (Ontario), Kathleen Grudzinski (British Columbia), Janai Haupapa (Alberta), Michelle Helmeczi (Alberta), Kathleen Keller, Natalie King (British Columbia), Kelcey Leavitt (Alberta), Mandy Marchak (British Columbia), Sabrina McDaid (Ontario), Wealtha Jade Menin Naglis (Alberta), Fedelia Omoghan (Ontario), Megan Pakulis (Ontario), Irene Patrinos (Ontario), Stevi Schnoor (British Columbia), Natasha Smith (British Columbia), Elizabeth Steele (Alberta), Natalie Tam (Ontario), Tiera Thomas-Reynolds (Ontario), Barbara Waddell (Forrestville Ferrets).
Prediction: Experience will cost the Ravens, being the least experienced team. I think they’ll come 6, but put up a good fight with the teams at the bottom of the table.
The Silver Ferns are on par with Australia as the oldest team, playing in the last five World Cups.
They’ve lost the 9’s and ANZAC Test matches against Australia this year, and will come out all guns blazing. Players to watch include Laura Mariu and Atawhai Tupaea, who stood out in test matches this year.
Team: Racquel Anderson (Waicoa Bay), Ngatokotoru Arakua (Counties), Sharlene Atai (Akarana), Maitua Feterika (Counties), Teuila Fotu Moala (Counties), Louisa Gago (Counties), Georgia Hale (VC) (Akarana), Honey Hireme (Counties), Amber Kani (Counties), Bunty Alyce Kuruwaka-Crowe (Canterbury), Laura Mariu (C) (Counties), Lilieta Maumau (Counties), Nita Maynard (NSW), Raecene McGregor (NSW), Krystal Murray( Counties), Kimiora Nati (Counties), Apii Nicholls-Pualau (Counties), Annetta-Claudia Nuuausala (Akarana), Hilda Peters (Counties), Kahurangi Peters (Counties), Krystal Rota (Counties), Aieshaleigh Smalley (Counties), Atawhai Tupaea (Counties), Shontelle Woodman (Akarana).
Prediction: I can see this year’s grand final being New Zealand vs Australia, and the Kiwis putting up a good fight all through the World Cup. I think Australia will come out on top, leaving New Zealand at a strong second place.
Competing in World Cups since 2000, the Lionesses are a strong competitor for this years World Cup.
Showcasing the best of the women’s Super League competition, England are one of the more experienced sides this year. After just missing out on the finals in the last World Cup, they have a point to prove in their campaign for another title. Players to watch include Kirsty Moroney, Jodie Cunningham and Lois Forsell.
Amy Hardcastle (Bradford Bulls), Andrea Dobson (Featherstone Rovers), Beth Sutcliffe (Bradford Bulls), Charlotte Booth (Bradford Bulls), Chantelle Crowl (Thatto Heath-St Helens), Claire Garner (Bradford Bulls), Danielle Bound (Thatto Heath-St Helens), Danika Priim (Bradford Bulls), Emily Rudge (Thatto Heath-St Helens), Emma Slowe (Featherstone Rovers), Faye Gaskin (Thatto Heath-St Helens), Jenny Welsby (Thatto Heath-St Helens), Jessica Courtman (Bradford Bulls), Jodie Cunningham (Thatto Heath-St Helens),Katherine Hepworth (Castleford Tigers), Kayleigh Bulman (Featherstone Rovers), Kirsty Moroney (Bradford Bulls), Lois Forsell (Bradford Bulls), Rachel Thompson (Thatto Heath-St Helens), Sarah Dunn (Featherstone Rovers), Shona Hoyle (Bradford Bulls), Stacey White (Bradford Bulls), Tara-Jane Stanley (Thatto Heath-St Helens).
Prediction: England will put up a strong fight in this year’s World Cup, and will easily be one of the top teams. I see the coming 3rd, but only just missing out on the Final
Competing in their second World Cup, the Cook Islands Moana are the second newest team to this years Women’s World Cup.
While only having a few international games under their belt, the Cook Islands Moana have a point to prove against the more experienced teams. They have a tough draw in the pools but are hoping to still push through the finals. Players to watch include Kiana Takairangi and Urshla Kere.
Team: Toka Natua (Tokoroa, NZ), Te Kura Ngat-Aerengamate (Counties-Manukau, NZ), Te Amohaere Ngat-Aerengamate (Counties-Manukau, NZ), Crystal George Tamarua (Auckland, NZ), Danielle Apaiana (Auckland, NZ), Stephanie Wilson (Sydney, Australia), Eliza Wilson (Auckland, NZ), Josina Singapu (Gold Coast, Australia), Karol Tanevesi (Sydney, Australia), Samaria Taia (Sydney, Australia), Natalee Tagavaitau (Auckland, NZ), Kaylen Ikitule (Auckland, NZ), Kiana Takairangi (Sydney, Australia), Chantelle Inangaro Schofield (Cook Islands), Beniamina Koiatu (Auckland, NZ), Inangaro Maraeara (Sydney, Australia), Manea Poa-Maoate (Wellington, NZ), Lydia Turua-Quedley (Melbourne, Australia), Ruahei Demant (Auckland, NZ),Cecelia Strickland (Perth, Australia), Urshla Kere (Brisbane, Australia), Kiritapu Demant (Auckland, NZ), Katelyn Arona (Christchurch, NZ).
Prediction: While so many new and lesser-known teams is good for International rugby league, it’ll make the competition much harder for these teams. Cook Islands will put up a good fight, but struggle against teams such as Australia and England. I see them coming 5th.
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