Bianca Adams and her daughter Eloise have become pioneers at the Forster Tuncurry Hawks after creating the first-ever all girls team to compete in the boys’ competition to continue a proud family history with Rugby League which has been ongoing for 75 years.
“My daughter played in the mixed competition last year and generally you get one or two girls in each team and she said, ‘Hey mum how come there is no girls’ competition? Why can’t girls have their own competition? Why do we have to play with the boys?’ and I said ‘That’s a really great question and how about we do our best to get that up and running,’” Bianca told ABC Coffs and Mid North Coast radio.
The Under-9s Green team have played two games in the opening two rounds of the Group 3 JRL season – the first against an all-male Taree Red Rovers and the second against the Taree Panthers - and Adams said it was fantastic to see the girls out on the field together competing strongly against their opposition.
“I think the girls are just as competitive as the boys are,” Adams said.
“The boys maybe to start off with were a little bit hesitant but once they saw the girls were going to get in there just as much as they were then the game was on, they were ready to go.
“I think that’s what it’s all about – I’m really passionate about breaking down the gender bias for girls.
“This next generation that are coming through are just going to change the world I believe so if it starts with a game of footy then so be it.
“When I asked my daughter what her favourite part of the game was she actually said, ‘Mum, how awesome were the smiles on all the girls faces after the game?’ so I was really proud of that.”
Rugby League runs deep in the Adams family, with Bianca’s Dad, Gary 'Grizzly' Adams’ involvement in the game spanning nearly 75 years and it seems that his grandchildren are following suit.
“Eloise has got an older brother who is turning 13 very soon so she’s been involved, coming along to watch his games and she thought that she could do that too, just like her big brother,” Adams said.
“Her Pop’s been involved for quite a long time as well and does a fair bit of representative football around our area.
“He is currently coaching the girls so he’s got lots of experience there and it’s fantastic for him, it’s a new challenge for him as well, coaching a teams of girls as opposed to boys as he’s used to.
“He is very proud and he loves the fact she loves footy just as much as his grandson and himself and when she was like ‘Let’s do this’ he was like ‘Sure thing, I’ll be on board.’”
This week, it will be a home team battle as the girls take on the Forster Tuncury Hawks Gold team at Harry Elliott Oval on Saturday.