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RFL to build on Women’s Challenge Cup success

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The Women’s Challenge Cup is set to develop and include new teams in the competition for 2019 as part of wider integrated plans for the growth of the girls’ and women’s game.

Leeds Rhinos won the Women’s Challenge Cup beating a strong Castleford Tigers side in a closely fought final. Bradford Bulls beat a valiant Stanningley side to lift the Women’s Challenge Shield. The double-header was played at the home of Warrington Wolves – the first time top flight Women’s Rugby League has been played at the Super League stadium.

Ralph Rimmer, Chief Executive, The Rugby Football League said; “Congratulations to all four finalists who showcased the sport in such an outstanding way, and many congratulations to Bradford Bulls and Leeds Rhinos. As the sport grows we are working with clubs and partners, including sponsors, to take more women’s games to top stadia, to increase the reach and profile of the sport with live streaming and media partnerships, and to explore more double-headers – including with the men’s competition. We want to take Women’s Rugby League to the next level, and the magic of the Challenge Cup is key to this. We will consult further with the passionate and committed stakeholders in the women’s game and announce some exciting plans for 2019 shortly.”

Lois Forsell is Leeds Rhinos captain and winner of Player of the Match in the 2018 Challenge Cup Final. She said; “The Finals was a great occasion for Women’s Rugby League. The players enjoyed the opportunity to play on such a top surface at a great venue, with four changing rooms available for the double-header. We all want to see more respect, more investment and more coverage for the sport and this is happening. It was also brilliant to hear about Warrington Wolves’ plans to develop girls’ Rugby League; we’d all like to see them ultimately join the Women’s Super League. I saw young girls in Warrington shirts watching and I hope we have inspired them to play too.”

Kirsty Moroney, Bradford Bulls and fellow England player, said; “For the players, especially our younger Bulls players, this was very special. So much so that the place and occasion slightly overwhelmed some at first! I would like to thank Warrington and the Rugby Football League for hosting a great event. It would be good to see even more coverage of the women’s competitions alongside the men’s; this is a big opportunity for Rugby League.”

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