World Cup call up for women’s rugby league talent

Charlotte Booth (Credit: The RFL)

Bradford Bulls and England star, Charlotte Booth, has become the first ever TASS-supported female rugby league player.

The Leeds Trinity student played a crucial role as the Bulls enjoyed a remarkable unbeaten season in 2017 and is now an England regular having been named in the squad for their trip to the 2017 Rugby League World Cup in Australia.

TASS is entering its third year of partnership with the Rugby Football League, which has seen more than 50 players supported to play professional Rugby League, combined with full time education.

The Scheme‚Äôs support is now open to players in the England programme who play in the Women’s Super League and are studying for a recognised qualification – and full back Booth is the first female rugby league player to benefit from TASS support.

In addition to this, the Rugby Football League and TASS have further enhanced their partnership to launch two Dual Career Rugby League Hubs to support player development for those engaging in university study.

The Hubs are the first two of a proposed six that will develop across the country and are based at Northumbria University and in Leeds, with a partnership between Leeds Beckett and Leeds University.

The Hubs will be the regional centre for players studying in that area and playing for Championship, League 1 or Reserve Grade teams and in the England Universities programme. Support is provided in lifestyle, psychology, medical support, and physical conditioning.

In year one, the North East and Yorkshire will be covered and the aim is to establish the same in the North West, Midlands, South East and South West over the next three years. Players in the latter four areas will be this year supported by athlete awards using the existing TASS service.

Rugby Football League National Player Development Manager, Tony Fretwell, said: “Dual Careers are absolutely critical to our sport.

“Every player, regardless of their success, has to engage in another career either concurrently or after playing, in addition to those who do not progress to full time playing careers.

“Supporting player and career development in a collaborative method with TASS is a tremendous asset to our sport and we thank TASS on behalf of the clubs, sport and of course the players who benefit.

“It is especially exciting to welcome Charlotte to the programme and we hope she is the first of a growing cohort of elite female dual careers athletes in Rugby League.”

TASS National Lead for Sport, Colin Allen, added: “We’re really pleased to be launching two Dual Career Hubs alongside the Rugby Football League.

“TASS believes these regional centres will provide the ideal environment to allow the young players to pursue their studies as well as their sport.

“The RFL should be commended for this forward-thinking approach to dual careers and we look forward to hopefully expanding the Hubs into new regions in the future.

“We’d also like to extend our congratulations to Charlotte on her fantastic achievement and TASS is proud to be involved with her development this year.”