It wasn’t too long ago that women had to fly cross-country to find a team to play in at national level.
Wallaroo and WA representative Rebecca Clough knows how far rugby has come since then, with multiple teams playing out of the state.
“We didn’t have a team in WA, so some girls would have to fly to Victoria and play for Melbourne or South Australia or things like that,” she said.
The westerners are hoping to truly compete this year, one of eight teams in the competition this year, with Sydney, NSW Country, Victoria, Queensland, South Australia and the Australian Defence Force Rugby Union.
An annual women’s nationals was confirmed for the first time this season, after years of irregular competitions, held in the lead-in to World Cups.
Clough said the new format was a major boost for women’s sport.
Queensland Reds’ Cheyenne Campbell said it was exciting to see a changing of the guard in many teams, with the growth of the sport.
“I've been around for a while and it's awesome to see new faces come through and new talent coming through and just making it stronger and stronger.
“It's only going to be good for women's rugby in Australia.”
With a competition and national team naming rights sponsor behind them this season, Campbell said there was unprecedented optimism around rugby.
“It's awesome to get that much backing from Buildcorp. We're looking forward to that sponsorship coming through and building women's rugby with more girls picking it up at all levels.”
The championships kick off today, Friday June 24, running until Sunday June 26.
Day one matches of the Buildcorp Women's National Rugby Championship in Riverview in Sydney.
8.30am, Sydney v ADFRU
9.30am, WA v Victoria
10.30am, QLD v NSW Country
11.30am, ACT v SA
1.00pm, Sydney v Victoria
2.00pm, WA v ADFRU
3.00pm, ACT v NSW Country
4.00pm, QLD v SA