Two NRL clubs have made history this week, announcing the first signings for the inaugural women’s NRL.
The St George Illawarra Dragons announced the signing of Sam Bremner, Kezie Apps and Talesha Quinn on Monday, all three of which played a part of the senior rugby league career in the Illawarra competition. Apps and Bremner, who are also currently employed with the Dragons, currently still in the Illawarra competition with the Helensburgh Tigerlillies.
The Brisbane Broncos followed suit, announcing the signing of Ali Brigginshaw, Brittany Breayley, Heather Ballinger and Kiwi Ferns player Teuila Fotu-Moala several days later. Despite missing this year’s series due to a ruptured ACL, Jillaroos 5/8 Caitlin Moran was also offered the contract that was guaranteed as a part of her employment with the Broncos, and will have her recovery supported and assisted by the club.
No signings have been announced by the remaining two clubs, Sydney Roosters and New Zealand Warriors. It is expected that the New Zealand team will be mostly made up of Kiwi Ferns players, and the Sydney Roosters have a large area of choice with close proximity to the Sydney and Illawarra competitions and feeder clubs such as Woy Woy.
These signings are the start of many, with the competition being only three months away. While they may not be the first women to be contacted to an NRL club, which has been done by the Sharks and Rabbitohs, these are the first women to be offered and sign an NRL contract.
More signings are expected to be announced in the coming weeks.