Rugby’s always been our national sport and no longer is it mostly males playing, their female counterparts are proving they’re every bit as capable on the field and their participation in the sport continues to grow.
So on Wednesday, May 23, there was great excitement at Waimea Intermediate School when they hosted Selica Winiata, Toka Natua and Kendra Cocksedge from the New Zealand Black Ferns squad.
“It was awesome they came for the girls tackle tournament, the girls were really excited about it,” says sports coordinator Shelley Roberts.
Showing off the World Cup trophy the Black Ferns secured after their win against England 41-32 in the 2017 final, the girls took the time to pass on some of their expertise.
Helping to referee games and offering coaching and tackling drills, they also participated in a question and answer session at lunchtime.
“Having them here really showed the schoolgirls that rugby is a sport they can carry on with,” says Shelley.
Shelley, a former Nelson Bays player, has been coaching girls tackle rugby for four years and says she’s very passionate about the sport.
“I enjoy seeing their confidence grow as they progress through the trainings towards their first game.”
The students are now looking ahead to their next tournament, tackle sevens, held in Motueka today and no doubt they’ll be taking along some renewed motivation. “They were such excellent role models, well spoken and professional. They reminded our players that it’s important to focus on a career path as well as sports,” says Shelley.

Spread the love.