The Harvey Norman NSW Women’s Premiership will boast some of the biggest names in women’s rugby league with NSW Women’s Origin stars Maddie Studdon, Corban McGregor, Tiana Penitani, Isabelle Kelly, Kirra Dibb and Shontelle Stowers all committing to playing in the revamped 2020 competition.
The state’s premier women’s competition will kick off on 18 July and be staged over nine rounds with the Grand Final slated for the weekend of 26-27 September.
“The growth in the women’s game has been phenomenal for the past few seasons and it’s pleasing that the NSWRL is able to offer players a pathway for higher honours with the Harvey Norman NSW Women’s Premiership,” NSWRL Chief Executive David Trodden said.
“The competition always throws up plenty of exciting contests and it’s great to see the skills of our players improve every season.
“Most importantly, it has also proven to be a wonderful nursery for our successful Harvey Norman NSW Women’s Origin team and I’m confident that this year won’t be any different.”
The NSWRL was forced to suspend the Harvey Norman NSW Women’s Premiership because of the COVID-19 pandemic but was recently granted permission from the NSW Government for community and senior football to resume from 1 July.
The revamped competition will include seven teams – South Sydney Rabbitohs, Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks, North Sydney Bears, Wentworthville Magpies, Wests Tigers, Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs and Central Coast Roosters – with a full draw to be released soon.
The competition has taken on more significance in 2020 as it will provide players with an opportunity to play before the Women’s Origin match scheduled for 13 November at a venue yet to be determined.
The NSW Women’s Origin team has won the past two Shields since the concept was rebranded to State of Origin in 2018 taking their total to four consecutive interstate titles against Queensland.