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The first ever Queensland Outback Women’s team has been selected after trials between the Northern and Southern Outback teams were played in Blackall at the weekend.

A good crowd gathered in anticipation and maybe some curiosity and were treated to some fantastic football.

Both teams came together for the first time on Friday for a training run followed by another session on Saturday morning, then played the game in the afternoon.

After the nerves settled, the players put on an incredible display of free-flowing footy with committed defence from both teams.

The scores were close all game with Southern running out winners 22-12 to claim the first Women’s outback championship.

After the game, the Queensland Outback Women’s team was announced by QRL Central region manager Rob Crow, alongside Queensland Outback coach, former Queensland and Cowboys forward John Buttigieg and assistant coach Nikki Richards, who starred for both Queensland and the Jillaroos.

The players are very fortunate to have such quality coaches for the first outing as outback representatives. No doubt they will learn a lot from these two and hear stories from both Buttigeig and Richards on their experiences and how they can progress in rugby league from outback towns.

The team will face North Queensland United – made up of players from the remote areas of Far North Queensland – and will play alongside the exisiting Men’s fixture between the two which is a regular fan favourite on the rugby league calendar.

The trials for the men’s side were held on the same day as the women but in Mitchell with teams from the South West, Central West and Mount Isa playing in a round robin competition.

South West ran out eventual winners at the weekend after going through the carnival undefeated – defeating Mount Isa 28-10 and Central West 24-22.

It was a thrilling match to end the day with Mount Isa prevailing over Central West 16-12.

Players from both Outback teams have come from Hughenden through to Roma and everywhere in between.

Congratulations to all players selected and good luck in the next game against North Queensland United to be played in Tully on Saturday, July 17.

A special thanks must go to the Blackall Junior Rugby League club – with help from the seniors – and Mitchell Rugby League juniors and seniors for organising the games and presentation dinners in both Blackall and Mitchell.

Queensland Outback Men’s team
1. Billy Coonan
2. Ryan Rayner
3. Coby Fechner
4. Jackson Shelswell
5. Ezekiel Thompson
6. Ollie Peak
7. Spencer Snelling
8. John Russo
9. Joey Packer
10. Kurt Rowbotham
11. Matthew Newton
12. Diega Teaukura
13. Dylan Buckingham

14. Lockie Pollock
15. Thomas Packer
16. Khan Ladbrook
17. Sam Cunningham
18. Harvey Wright

Coach: Wayne Collie

Queensland Outback Women’s team
1. Daniella Mudu
2. Leonie May
3. Danielle Sladden
4. Kailah Rogers
5. Amber Abells
6. Jamie-Lee Cowad
7. Reeghyn Beardmore
8. Tilda Olsson
9. Peyton Storch
10. Maddison Hegarty
11. Chelsea Griffin
12. Britney Smith
13. Nadia Hoad

14. Kimberley Saunders
15. Antonia Hendry-Ratima
16. Abbie West
17. Caitlin Steel
18. Karma Kelly
19. Samantha Bond

Coach: John Buttigieg