Cardiff Demons have accepted an invitation to compete in the National Women’s Rugby League Nines next Sunday May 1 at Victoria Park in Warrington.
The Nines competition has been introduced to provide a new exciting playing format to the current players, allowing teams from different tiers of the women’s game to compete against one another whilst also providing an opportunity to engage with and inspire future players with meet and greet opportunities and inspiration sessions.
With teams from Women’s Super League 1 and 2, Women’s Super League South and the Women’s Championship competing, there will be a range of abilities throughout the tournament.
The 20 sides have been drawn into five groups of four, with the groups being played in morning and afternoon sessions. The winners of each group, along with the best runner-up, will qualify for a six-team finals event at the AJ Bell Stadium, home of Wales Rugby League’s Super League partners Salford Red Devils, on July 24.
Cardiff Demons, who won the Betfred Super League South competition last year, have been drawn in Group E along with Leigh Miners Rangers, York City Knights and Bradford Bulls, with matches being played between 1.30pm and 4pm.
Demons’ head coach Ian Newbury said: “We’ve some new girls coming into the squad so it’ll be a mixture of experienced and newcomers giving it a go and a different form of the game. It’ll be a great opportunity for us at Cardiff Demons to see where we stand in the overall rugby league landscape. York especially will be a massive test and it’ll give us an opportunity to see where we need to improve. Super League South is expanding this year with a longer season where we face every elite side in the south so it’s moving in the direction we all wanted it to go. We’ll use the Nines tournament next week as a good launch for the season and we’ll kick on from there.”
RFL head of growth, Thomas Brindle, said: “We’re really excited about what this tournament has to offer on and off the pitch. The stars of women’s game have inspired more young fans and players than ever before, thanks to the increased profile the Women’s Super League has injected into the sport.
“The festival approach at Warrington offers opportunities for complete novices, younger players and potential stars of tomorrow to come along and find out more about Women’s Rugby League and how to get involved. Throughout the day we’ll have workshops connecting younger players with those at the top level, including topics such as body positivity and how to be physically prepared for the demands of the game. With entertainment throughout the day running alongside the action on the pitch, there’ll be something for everyone. It’s an event not to be missed.”
The stars of women’s game have inspired more young fans and players than ever before with the increased profile the Women’s Super League has injected into the sport. As part of the inaugural Nines Competition at Victoria Park Warrington, we want to provide our young fans with a chance to hear from some of the Women’s Super League stars as they chat about what it takes to make it to the top of the game and what it means to ‘Play like a Girl’. Link for spectators to book onto a session – https://www.eticketing.co.uk/rugbyleague/EDP/Event/Index/106
This tournament comes nearly 20 years after the original Cardiff Demons men’s side played in the York International 9s, part of a festival held to celebrate the Queen’s Golden Jubilee celebrations.
Confirmed Cardiff Demons squad for the day: Lauren Aitken, Leanne Burnell, Katie Carr, Rosie Carr, Seren Gough-Walters, Ffion Jenkins, Bryonie King, Zoe Lewis, Joeann McGuire, Eleri Michael, Charlie Mundy, Ffion Owen, Molly Reardon, Sophie Salari, Rafiuke Taylor, Stacey Wright.
Group A – Morning Session – First Game Kicks off at 10.30am
Bristol Golden Ferns
Group B – Morning Session – First Game Kicks off at 10.30am
Dublin City Exiles
Group C – Morning Session – First Game Kicks off at 10.30am
Group D – Afternoon Session – First Game Kick off at 1.30pm
Salford Red Devils
Group E – Afternoon Session – First Game Kick off at 1.30pm
Leigh Miners Rangers
York City Knights