BOOM – WOMEN’S RUGBY SUPERCHARGED ADVANCEMENT

WORLD RECORD CROWD 58,498

What a few week’s it has been for women’s rugby from a world record crowd in England to the growth of Super rugby competitions in New Zealand and Australia and now an exciting schedule for the World champion Black Ferns.

Firstly the brilliant Six Nations women’s final at the hallowed turf of Twickenham in England recently where a world record 58,498 fans turned out to see an absolute classic final between the Red Roses of England against France.

England raced away to a 33-0 lead at halftime only for France to storm back before eventually losing 33-38, both teams turning on a great spectacle.

These two teams plus third placed Wales will travel back to New Zealand in October for three rounds of matches in a new mini World Cup. The top three teams out of the Pacific Four competition featuring New Zealand, Australia, USA and Canada will join the three Northern Hemisphere teams in what is a major coup for the women’s game and particularly for New Zealand where the game is attracting record numbers of new players on the back of the Black Ferns World Cup win.

SARAH HIRINI CLASS ACT IN BOTH 15's AND 7's.

Super rugby on both New Zealand and Australia enjoyed significant advancements this year as far as improved performance levels go and in the competitiveness of both competitions.

The emergence of the Western Force was a big positive in Australia, that team winning their last two matches. In the 32-player Australian squad named recently, coach Jay Tregonning included three teenage players including 16 year-old Waratahs fullback Caitlyn Halse. Also a new skipper, their youngest ever, 22 year-old Waratahs flanker Piper Duck. Current captain Shannon Parry is retiring after this weekend’s test against Fiji.

16 YR OLD CAITLYN HALSE PROVING IF YOU ARE GOOD ENOUGH YOU ARE OLD ENOUGH.

Six new players were named on the New Zealand Rugby Union contracted list for this year. Counties Manukau hooker Grace Gage, Auckland Storm and former New Castle WNRL player, utility back Katelyn Vahaakolo, Hurricanes Poua loose-forward Layla Sae, a former New Zealand secondary schools volleyball rep, Matatu loose-forward Lucy Jenkins, Chiefs Manawa utility back Mererangi Paul and Matatu inside back Rosie Kelly.

With significantly improved resources you can bet it won’t take the Aussies long to get up to speed and be right in the mix with New Zealand, England and France.

In each case of the respective super rugby competitions underdogs took out the crowns, Matatu, the South Island side, won Super Rugby Aupiki in New Zealand upsetting previously unbeaten Chiefs Manawa 33-31,while Fijian Drua upset Queensland Reds 38-30.

The Pacific Four series involving New Zealand, Australia, USA and Canada kicks off next month on June 29 at Kayo Stadium in Redcliffe, north of Brisbane featuring the Black Ferns and the Australian Wallaroos who will also be contesting the Laurie O’Reilly Cup.

RUBY TUI - OFF TO THE USA

Six new players were named on the New Zealand Rugby Union contracted list for this year. Counties Manukau hooker Grace Gage, Auckland Storm and former New Castle WNRL player, utility back Katelyn Vahaakolo, Hurricanes Poua loose-forward Layla Sae, a former New Zealand secondary schools volleyball rep, Matatu loose-forward Lucy Jenkins, Chiefs Manawa utility back Mererangi Paul and Matatu inside back Rosie Kelly.

With significantly improved resources you can bet it won’t take the Aussies long to get up to speed and be right in the mix with New Zealand, England and France.

In each case of the respective super rugby competitions underdogs took out the crowns, Matatu, the South Island side, won Super Rugby Aupiki in New Zealand upsetting previously unbeaten Chiefs Manawa 33-31,while Fijian Drua upset Queensland Reds 38-30.

The Pacific Four series involving New Zealand, Australia, USA and Canada kicks off next month on June 29 at Kayo Stadium in Redcliffe, north of Brisbane featuring the Black Ferns and the Australian Wallaroos who will also be contesting the Laurie O’Reilly Cup.

Story by John Alexander | Supporting Images sourced by Absolutely Famous.

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