In late September/October 2019, over 50 open age women were nominated by their coaching staff and clubs to attend the national development programme DiSE (Diploma in sporting excellence).
The programme will run alongside the 16-17-year olds studies in partnership with Loughborough College. The women will be given the opportunity to train and develop their skills at a high performance and elite level. The programme is designed to identify those potential players for the national and Knights team.
I asked Holly Cole of Hull KR and Megan Bragg of Wigan Warriors how do you both feel about the level of training at the programme?
MB: “It concentrates a lot more on the development side than your clubs would do. We are aiming to play for a national side, so It’s more difficult but it’s not too hard for is to progress through.”
HC: “I think it’s a lot more skill based, and what Meghan said its more developed and is testing us to a higher standard.”
CJ: “In terms of training, both Hull KR and Wigan are mirror imaging this kind of training, you are both playing for teams that have a male team in the Super League.
“So they have the facilities to enable this kind off training. Have any of you experienced a grass roots team and saw for yourself how difficult to is for these teams to progress with limited resources and money?
MB: “I’ve played for grass roots teams as I’ve been playing 7 years my last team was Wigan St Jude’s the change from that is massive and this is much more professional.”
HC: “I’ve been with Hull KR from the beginning but moving from under 12’s all the way through 14’s-16’s to open age has been difficult. Playing in women’s is a really big change.”
CJ: “How do you feel about the step up in training? Your young women, how is the impact on your bodies and do you enjoy it?”
MB: “I’m enjoying it, but at 16-17-year-old is a lot to put on the body. Sometimes when you see women training, they look conditioned and we are expected to train the same as them.
“Some of us are developing injuries from too much stress on our bodies and now we are training every day of the week adding that to our college work it’s a lot to be asked to do.”
CJ: “How do you cope with time management of college and training is it attainable?”
HC, Well I do 6 hours at college, 4 lessons a day then I have to catch up at home. I have 4 BTEC’S to do and it’s a lot of coursework. It can be stressful, but I can handle it as I’m prepared and have family and friends who support me.
MB: “I’m different as I have one BTEC but then, I attend training for Wigan, DiSE and then I train every day.”
CJ: “Moving forward, so where do you both see yourself in five years’ time?”
HC: “I’d like to see us in the SL and hopefully training with the England women’s side.”
MB: “I want to have an England shirt on! I want to be in Australia playing for England these are my goals and I’m working hard to get there.”