By Danny McCarthy
The Jindalee Jaguars will debut a team in the QWAFA this year as the club puts an emphasis on female footy and provides a home for players where they can grow, learn and evolve as they move from junior to senior level.
The team was the culmination of an idea by club vice-president Corey Sells to provide that base.
“My daughter still plays soccer, when she was coming through, she’d have to move from club to club to find a team, constantly shuffling around. Because she moved around so much I wanted to have, a few of the girls we’d coached over the last few years, I wanted to have a home for them to stay at. So that’s why we’ve pushed it so hard,” Sells said.
Everyone was involved in making the team as ex-players, club members and Sells made it reality.
“Last couple of years we’ve had a group of 12 girls, ex-Jag players that were playing at another club, talking about coming across. But we just didn’t seem to have the numbers,” he said.
“The girls came up with a list by the end of October and we put an advertisement out on facebook. We contacted all of our ex-players, went through friends, those at the club, contacted a few schools and through our 17’s team, we really advertised it as much as possible and came up with the numbers.”
Through its commitment to female footy Sells hopes this will help develop the club and provide a strong base.
“We see the women’s game as a real growth area and we wanted to have somewhere where the girls could stay and play footy,” he said.
“Through the process of getting the team together we realised there is a big growth area here, huge growth area. So we’ve decided we want to be a club that women’s footy is played at all age levels. We didn’t think it would go this well this year but it has and we just want to grow from there.”
The key for this season will be creating a strong culture within the team that will be passed onto the younger players.
“We don’t have huge expectations in terms of win-loss ratio, that’s not really what we’re about. It’s more about improving the girls, improving the numbers,” he said.
“The expectation with the team is that they perform in a way that they encourage younger girls to come along and play. We just want them to be able to compete and improve over this season.”
The team has already started training under new coach Jeff Boehmer, while the club is on the look out for more junior girls to join.