Bond University continues to be a trail blazer for women’s rugby with the Bull Sharks set to claim another slice of history by competing for the first ever Australian Club Championships.
State of origin-style deciders between the premiers of the Sydney and Brisbane competitions to be named the nation’s best men’s side date back to 1982, but for the first time ever 2023 will see the number one women’s club crowned.
The Bull Sharks will take on Sydney club Gordon on the same day that Brisbane club Wests plays Sydney University.
The ground-breaking double header will take place at Sci-Fleet Stadium in Brisbane and will be broadcast on Stan Sport.
The Bull Sharks completed the clean-sweep in 2022 by claiming the Premier Rugby premiership then dominating the 7s season with victories in the National University Series and the Queensland State Titles.
Bond University demonstrated its commitment to the women’s game by contributing $10,000 towards travel and operational costs to ensure the inaugural Australian Club Championship could go ahead.
Bond’s Director of Rugby Luca Liussi said it was a significant step forward for women’s rugby and one the Bull Sharks’ players richly deserved.
“The girls at the Bull Sharks love their rugby,” he said.
“They train hard and are ultra-professional in the way they prepare themselves and that was demonstrated in the success they have enjoyed the past 12 months.
“But they are also passionate about growing the game and in addition to the chance to compete for the title as Australia’s best club, it is the opportunity to put another flag in the ground for women’s rugby that has them so excited.’’
The Bull Sharks’ Queensland Reds centre Mel Wilks agreed saying she was full of gratitude for an opportunity she admits she never saw coming.
“This is a big effort and another way to grow women’s rugby,” she said.
“It’s a great opportunity to play and test ourselves against the girls from Sydney.
“To be the ‘first’ in a game of this standing is great.’’
Wilks was the standout Player of the Match in last year’s Queensland Premier Rugby grand final with her potent running game instrumental in a 25-12 upset of Easts.