Sydney Roosters Tarsha Gale Blake Cavallaro is thrilled at the prospect of seeing a number of his players make the step up into the State of Origin arena this Thursday night.
Six of the Club's Tarsha Gale Premiership-winning side have been selected to take the field against Queensland this Thursday night in a big boost for not only their Rugby League résumés, but for their step up into the NRLW.
Among the squad include electrifying fullback Jada Taylor, halfback and talisman Tayla Montgomery as well as local product and tough-as-teak competitor Iesha Duckett.
Sisters Anneka and Leilani Wilson have also been selected, the former a hooker and half with plenty of x-factor and the latter the Roosters' 2022 Player of the Year who typifies the warrior-like qualities required for the State of Origin arena.
Front rower Milly Lupo has also been rewarded for her meteoric rise and form over the last twelve months with a place in the extended squad.
With just a few days remaining before kick-off at Leichhardt Oval, the NSW Blues Womens Under 19s Coach praised his squad's preparation throughout the week.
“It’s been great, the girls have been awesome,” Cavallaro said.
“It’s been really good to connect both on and off the field. The girls are starting to get into their processes now – it’s been a couple of days into training so they’re looking forward to Thursday.
“Some of these girls have been part of NRLW environments and some others part of the program last year, especially some of those players in key positions.
“You can definitely see some natural leaders, and that’s reflecting on the new players that have come in. We have a really good combination of experienced and new players."
With a host of his Club players looking to make the step up into the NRLW as early as the 2022 season in just a couple of months' time, Cavallaro believes that the Origin experience will be invaluable.
Not only will donning the sky blue of the state give his players an understanding of what to expect at the higher levels of Rugby League, but it also acts as a just reward for their form during the Tarsha Gale season.
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“It gives them the confidence so if they do step up into the NRLW arena or a higher grade, they’ve got that experience of being in an elite environment,” he explained.
“They were the undefeated Premiers this year, so a lot of those girls have made it through the squad – they’ve been excited all week at camp to represent the Blues and to represent the Club on Thursday night.
“This week has all been about what we do both on and off the field and how we prepare and how we accelerate that on the field.
“So being part of that elite environment is definitely going to give them an idea of how to be successful later on in their Rugby League career.
“It’s a great stepping-stone to the NRLW and it’s great to have some of our Tarsha Gale players the recognition they deserve.”
They were the undefeated Premiers this year, so a lot of those girls have made it through the squad – they’ve been excited all week at camp to represent the Blues and to represent the Club on Thursday night.Blake Cavallaro Roosters Tarsha Gale and NSW Women's Under 19s Head Coach
As for the match itself, no matter what age or grade, the Blues and Maroons always produce a high-quality contest filled with passion and intensity, and that's exactly what the Head Coach is expecting.
Both the men's and women's under 19s matches will be broadcast on Channel 9 and Foxtel respectively, giving the stars of the future even more exposure on the big stage.
“It’s going to be tough, and it’s going to be physical early on,” he predicted.
“But I think the longer the game goes the more it’s going to open up and we’ll be seeing some of those individuals stand out. I think there’s going to be a bit more attacking footy by the time the hooter goes.
“We’re very grateful that this year the under 19s game will be broadcasted on television so the players will get a bit more exposure which can only be beneficial for our pathways moving forward in the female game.
“There are a lot of key girls from our Roosters squad and I’m excited to see what they can produce.”