FOUR Orange league tag guns will represent Group 10 at next weekend’s Western Division representative carnival at Apex Oval.
Making the cut following a selection trial in Bathurst on Monday night, CYMS guns Tori Moore, Nikki D’Aquino and Olivia Patterson made the 17-strong squad, while Hawks star Haley Butcherine will also make the trip to Dubbo as part of Mick Armstrong’s team.
Victorious in their lone clash in 2013 courtesy of a 30-0 thrashing of the Woodbridge Cup, Armstrong believes this year’s team is even better.
“I think so. Judging by the talent that was at the trials ... it was pretty tough to pick a side,” Armstrong said.
“There’s plenty of young talent there at the moment, which is great for the competition.”
Proving a league tag hub for the Group 10 competition, Bathurst has provided no less than eight players, with defending league tag premiers Panthers and St Pat’s supplying four players each in the 17-strong squad.
The league tag competition was introduced in Group 10 in 2012 and, for the first time, this year all nine senior clubs will be fielding ladies teams, with Blayney and Mudgee debuting in round one of the 2014 season.
But, as strong as the game is in Group 10, it’s still only new to a number of Country Rugby League areas.
As a result, the only competition Group 10 has at a Western Division level is from the Woodbridge Cup.
Armstrong was hopeful Group 11 would embrace the concept as much as its neighbours had and, with further representative opportunities in the works, was confident league tag was more than just a bush footy experiment.
“Areas like Group Nine and Group 20 have strong competitions, and I think we’re looking at maybe playing them,” Armstrong said.
“But they’re fairly set up in what they play already. It’d be great if Group 11 could get a side.”
Group 10 has a training session on Monday, May 5, at Carrington Park before taking on the Woodbridge Cup league tag outfit from 1.15pm at Dubbo’s Apex Oval on Saturday, May 10.
GROUP 10 LEAGUE TAG: Jess Scadding, Karah Armstrong, Bridget Rhynehart (Bathurst St Pat’s), Claire Woolmington, Stacey Elvy, Lauren Hillman, Matilda Power, Monique Luff (Bathurst Panthers), Olivia Patterson, Nikki D’Aquino, Tori Moore (Orange CYMS), Angela Green, Tiff Northey (Lithgow), Zoe Mawkes (Oberon), Jess Tarrant (Cowra ), Sophie Stammers (Blayney), Hayley Butcherine (Orange Hawks).