Young Australian women are going where they've never been before.

A group of talented young Australian women will be heading overseas to play one of the world’s roughest sports.

The first Junior Roller Derby World Cup is being held in Seattle this week and Australia has been asked to take part. They will be taking a team to the 2015 World Cup along with Canada and two US teams.

The Aussie team consists of eight girls from Adelaide, three from Hobart, three from Sydney, a few from Brisbane and one from Victoria. They will be playing in a competition that is full body contact and is played on wheels. The team is called Lizzie and the Frill Seekers and the coach is optimistic that we could come away as world champs.

The junior Australian team. Image via Team Australia Junior Roller Derby Facebook page.

Seventeen-year-old Sadie Mason is the one player from Victoria who will be representing Australia this year. She told the ABC that even though she’s just recovered from a broken arm because of the brutality of the sport she’s excited to be going.

Of the game she told ABC, “[It’s] exhilarating I’d say, it’s full contact, so you know you get home and then go, “Oh, okay, look there’s some bruises on my arm,” or it’s very easy to hurt yourself.”

Roller Derby is a contact sport between two teams made up of five players. Everyone skates in the same direction around a track. There are a series of short contests where a ‘jammer’ has to score points by lapping the other team. The opposition has to try and stop them while helping their own jammer get laps up. So you’re playing offence and defence at the same time.

The Australian members from Adelaide. Image via L’il Adelaide Rollers Facebook Page.

Sadie Mason tells the ABC that she believes it to be the fastest growing women’s sport in the world.

As with most women’s sport (especially those just starting to grow on the world stage) the team’s involvement doesn’t come without cost – a very high cost in this case. The team has had to raise $50, 000 for their airfares alone. So coach, Samantha Burgess has been driving a lot of fundraising to get the girls the money so they can get over there.

Burgess says that taking a team of teenagers overseas is very expensive.

“Financially? Massive. We’ve done a lot of fundraising, sausage sizzles, bake sales, disco nights. We did a national raffle,” she told the ABC.


The coach also admits that Australia are going in as the underdogs, but she thinks that could play to their advantage and says the goal is to surprise everyone and come out as world champions.

Team members from Hobart. Image via Hobart Junior Roller Derby Facebook page.

The ultimate goal for these women is that roller derby will continue to grow in popularity and hopefully one day this talented team will be paid to play for Australia like so many other athletes.

Roller Derby has been around since the 1930s when it took off in the USA. It was first televised on New York television in 1948 showing competition between New York and Boston.

This week (nearly 100 years later) Roller Derby will host its first ever junior world cup, and we’re so proud that Australia has been asked to be involved.

Good luck to the young women and well done for raising the money to follow your passion.

And in other sporting news…

– This weeks biggest news came directly from FIFA’s official twitter account with a sexist and patronising message of congratulations to England’s women’s football team – who had come out third in the World Cup. The tweet read, “Our #Lionesses go back to being mothers, partners and daughters today, but they have taken on another title – heroes”. It was deleted soon after following a barrage of complaints on social media.

– Australian swimmer Cate Campbell, 23, is set to leave for Russia next week to defend her 100m freestyle crown. She will be the first woman in 40 years to defend this title while only three other Aussie women have defended world titles before -Libby Trickett, Jessicah Shipper and Leisel Jones.  The world’s fastest swimmer also announced her plans to swim in the 2020 Olympics. Go Cate, we’ll be cheering for you.

– And in Wimbledon-related news, both Australian female tennis players Casey Dellacqua and Sam Stosur’s were ousted after round three at the All England’s Club. Whilst we’re sad to see our two Aussie women fail to progress, this years Aussie team have performed the best in 16 years with five members progressing to that the third round. Congratulations.

What sport have you been watching or playing this week?