NSWRL chief executive David Trodden says a professional women’s rugby league competition will come to fruition soon.
Trodden said rugby league is taking a “strategic approach” in ensuring players from the age of six can continue right through to open age and professional competitions.
The comments come after NSW and Queensland women’s rugby league secured its first major sponsor in a bid to support young girls in reaching higher level competitions.
Until recently in NSW, there has been a longstanding gap between mixed junior leagues and open-aged competitions, with girls able to play junior competitions with boys until the age of 12 but then offered limited options to return until the age of 17 in the open division.
Rugby league is also playing catch-up with a number of other sports such as the AFL – after it started a semi-professional women’s competition this year and the likes of netball and cricket which have recently upped payments to women playing their codes.
But Trodden said rugby league needed more hard work and a constant flow of players to get to that point.