With support from the Australian Rugby League Commission (ARLC), the Queensland Rugby League (QRL) has outlined its plans to implement a new open-aged female rugby league competition starting in 2020.
This announcement comes on the back of a further rise in participation numbers and significant developments for women’s rugby league, with the NRL Women’s Premiership’s second season having wrapped up a month ago.
The plans come with support from the ARLC, who has approved a funding request from the QRL to get the competition up and running next year.
QRL managing director, Robert Moore, said the interest in setting up the league is strong from initial meetings with potential clubs to be involved.
“This is an exciting time for rugby league in Queensland and we now look forward to the formation of a strong and viable women’s state league thanks to the support of the ARLC,” Mr Moore said.
“We have spent the last month meeting with potential clubs and the interest is strong.
“The model we are working towards is a maximum eight-team league with a presence in all three QRL Regions – South East, Central and Northern,” he said.
The competition, if set-up, would commence at the same time as all other state-wide leagues and would be played between seven and 10 weeks, including a finals series set to finish two weeks before the Holden Women’s State of Origin match.
This year alone, the ARLC’s support of women’s and girl’s rugby league competitions has been evident by $400,000 of funding allocated to the QRL to help develop a number of high performance and representative programs across the state.
At this stage, potential clubs have been invited to submit an Expression of Interest to register their participation in the new open-aged female competition if it were to come to a head in 2020.