It’s been a year now since the NRL-Digicel Pacific Outreach Programme’s first Open Girls Rugby League Tournament at the Marist Grounds in Lotopa.
Following the success both on and off the field from last year’s tournament, NRL in Samoa have put the call out again for more female players aged 16 – 18, to jump on board.
Next Tuesday 8th August will see 80 young ladies from the colleges of Papauta, Vaimauga, Leififi and Faleata battle it out in a Round Robin tournament where the winners of the most games, take all!
In partnership with Digicel, the tournament is part and parcel of NRL’s bid to not only grow League in Samoa but also to acknowledge the importance of team sports as a tool to improve socio-economic benefits for the country, develop confidence and leadership and teamwork skills.
This vision is shared not only with their partners at Digicel but is also in line with M.E.S.C’s “Sports for Development” programme that encourages the advancement of the rights of women, reducing anti-social behaviour and building community and national identity.
Gabrielle Apelu, NRL’s first female In Country Manager said “The results we’ve seen both on and off the field are awesome – you can see the difference in their levels of self-confidence, win or lose, the girls are just happy to have a space where they could display their talent and abilities.
Aside from the tournament, we also have our Beyond the Goalposts Star programme where 5 young females from different schools are handpicked to mobilise their peers via physical activity.
Through this we focus on leadership, teamwork and other activities to build self-confidence, encouraging our young females to chase their dreams regardless of whether they play sport or not”.
Gabrielle added, “the second Open Girls Rugby League tournament will be opened by Her Excellency Sue Langford next Tuesday and will run from 8am – 1.30pm at the Marist Grounds in Lotopa.
We encourage all members of the public to come along as a show of support and a reminder of the sporting talent that is found here in our own backyard”.