Women’s rugby across the decades will be celebrated at the Ngatitoa Domain this Saturday with a special Gala Day opening to kick the season off.
The season opening event will help recognise 30 years of women’s rugby in Wellington which officially started in 1989.
Not only will it feature all senior women’s teams playing at the same venue for the first round of the Rebecca Liua’ana Trophy, but there will also be a junior girls’ Rippa tournament to feature the next generation of players coming into the sport.
An after-match function will be held for the teams, which will be marked with the presentation of 50th caps to Pride representative players.
Women’s rugby in Wellington continues to produce hugely positive results with player numbers increasing 7% in 2018.That has seen the number of registered players grow to 1300.
Those numbers will hopefully continue to increase as the women’s game receives more exposure like the tremendous efforts of the Wellington Pride side which won the Farah Palmer Championship last season.
The performance of the side saw five of the Pride side contracted to the Black Ferns squad.
Following on from the Gala Day, a Girls Holiday Programme will be held in the first week of the school holidays between April 15 and 18 at the Petone Rugby Football Club.
More exciting news for the women’s game is the announcement of the first women’s curtain raiser to a super rugby game in the capital.
The annual Hurricanes club night on Friday 17th May will have added meaning to it next month with a curtain raiser to be played between the top two Wellington women’s club sides, Northern United and Oriental Rongotai.
It will be the first time a women’s club rugby match has been played at Westpac Stadium and the first time a women’s curtain raiser has been played before a Hurricanes home match.
It also promises to be an exciting and entertaining fixture, especially if it comes close to last year’s women’s final between the two sides that ended with Northern United coming out on top 20-15.
Gala Day Matches (all 11:30am kick-off):
Paremata-Plimmerton v Old Boys University; Ngati Toa Domain #1
Hutt Old Boys Marist v Poneke; Ngati Toa Domain #2
Northern United v Marist St Pats; Ngati Toa Domain #3
Oriental-Rongotai v Petone; Ngati Toa Domain #4