CENTRAL West coach Amanda Ferguson will have one thing in mind when her side runs out for the 2014 NSW Country Women’s Rugby Championship next weekend at Endeavour Oval.
“Last year we finished on equal points [on top of the ladder] but Hunter’s for-and-against was better than ours. If we can improve on that then we’ll be happy,” the experienced player-come-coach said.
“We should have a competitive squad this year.
“We’ve got a number of new faces and there’s a few players returning this season so we’ve got a good mix.”
Ferguson has named a strong squad ahead of this year’s championship, set to be contested by Central West, Hunter and Central North.
In the squad are Emu Chicks Vanessa Foliaki, Rebecca Bryden, Ash Adams and Jessica Scadding, while, returning to the representative fold, Orange star and former NSW Country player Charmaine Buckley has also been named.
“It’ll be great to have her experience in the side again,” Ferguson added.
One of the new faces in the team this year is from Cowra, with European Inge Visser unsurprisingly making the Central West cut after a stunning start to the year that also netted her a spot in the NSW Sevens outfit.
An omission this season, Aleasha Clinghan is unavailable for this year’s championship at Endeavour Oval due to work.
“That’s a big loss because Aleasha was the most improved player at the country championships last year,” Ferguson said.
Central West’s first game of the country championship will be held at 10.30am next Saturday against Central North, with the host’s next clash against Hunter from 12.15pm.
Central North tackles Hunter then from 2pm.
The team with the most points following the three games is crowned this year’s champion.
Dubbo women to be 'surprise packet'
THE 2014 women’s Blowes Clothing Cup competition will boast at least four teams this season after Dubbo recently joined the ladies fold.
Adding to last year’s three-team quota of Orange Emus, Cowra Eagles and the CSEwes, Dubbo is a welcome addition to the quickly expanding Central West Rugby Union women’s premiership, with Bourke and possibly Mudgee also competing in 2014.
“It’s great to see,” women’s president Amanda Ferguson said.
“Dubbo have a few new girls who are also in the Central West team, one’s from England and the other is from New Zealand. They’ll be the surprise packet of the season I think.”
The first round of the season begins on Saturday, May 17.
Emus will travel to Cowra to take on the Eagles while the Ewes will host Dubbo in Bathurst.
Ferguson said the plan was to play 12-a-side rugby.
“But if a side only has 10 then we’ll play with 10. We’ll go as low as sevens,” she said.