Garbutt Magpies return to AFL Townsville

The Garbutt Magpies will re-join AFL Townsville senior ranks in 2020 with a senior women’s team being accepted into the competition. The Garbutt Magpies last competed in an AFL Townsville senior competition in 1988 and won their last men’s premiership in 1982.

After undertaking an exhaustive entry process, the Garbutt Magpies will now join fellow clubs, Hermit Park, Thuringowa, Curra, University and Northern Beaches in making up a six team senior women’s competition. With a close alignment to the Garbutt Bombers junior club, the emergence of the Garbutt Magpies women’s program now provides a clear female pathway from juniors through the seniors across both clubs.

AFL Queensland’s State Manager – Senior Football Operations, Barry Gibson, said the Garbutt Magpies had worked extremely hard over the past few years to put themselves into a position where they could gain entry back into the senior space.

“The Garbutt Magpies history dates back some 64 years, so it’s fantastic that they have been able to put themselves in a position to expand on that history”, Mr Gibson said.  

“We were extremely impressed with their pitch to join the women’s competition, as they comfortably met all the required criteria for a new team.

“The Garbutt Magpies identify is culturally significant to their local community group and they are extremely confident that identity will assist in attracting players to the club.

“With more and more young females being exposed to our game through junior football and the rapidly growing Q Schools Cup, AFL Queensland is looking forward to the role the Garbutt Magpies will play in providing opportunities for females within their community group to participate in football in Townsville”, Mr Gibson added.  

Garbutt Magpies Club President, Nicole Ross, said the team’s reinstatement back into the competition is due to countless years of hard work and will undoubtedly help the community in the future.

“It’s an unreal feeling to be back. It means everything to the [Garbutt] community and the elders. ,” Ross said.

“We’ve worked on it for years and the endless work done behind the scenes has been unreal. We wouldn’t have come this far if not for the team.”

The Garbutt Magpies women will add a new chapter to the club’s history on Saturday, March 21, when they play their first regular season game at home.

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