- Wigan Warriors continue to build into the future of the Women’s game with recruitment of U16s and U19s.
- In 2022, nine players progressed from the Girls Academy to debut for the Women’s first team.
- Read below to find out more about our girls pathway in 2023.
In 2022, Wigan Warriors handed out nine debuts to girls who had progressed through the Warriors Academy system, with the Academy also playing three games across the season – claiming three wins from three.
The U16s and U19s girls come to Robin Park Arena once a week as an extra session to work alongside their Community Clubs, with sessions based around core skill and correct tackle technique, with the addition of a strength & conditioning programme for each individual player.
Core Wigan Warriors values are taught from the U16s stage including bringing the correct kit, having a want to learn and develop, always wanting to better everything that you do, building a healthy competitiveness within the group and this will ultimately drive the team towards Super League.
In addition, Wigan Warriors offered girls development sessions throughout the year, running alongside the Wigan Warriors Community Foundation High School delivery with a view to identify potential Wigan Warriors Super League players from an early age.
Reflecting on the 2022 Academy programme, Head Coach John Whalley said: “2022 was a very positive year both on and off the field for the Girls Academy. Early in 2022, we held sessions for players aged 16-19 over several weeks where we selected 30 players to join our U19s for the season.
“Within 2022 the girls were given three fixtures against Huddersfield, Leeds and St Helens. All 30 players played across the three fixtures, winning all 3 games which for the girls was certainly very pleasing but for me, off the field we had started to develop a group of home-grown players that had bought into what we want to achieve here at Wigan Warriors. I am really looking forward to what this group can achieve in 2023.”
In 2023, Wigan Warriors will run a girls pathway programme for those that don’t make the Academy, this will give us the opportunity to develop the girls with spots still available in the squad. We will run 4-week blocks throughout the year, this will be based on core skill, tackle technique and a basic understanding of strength and conditioning.
Academy graduate and Wigan Warriors Women’s Young Player of the Year, Kaitlin Hilton, commented: “It was a massive privilege to Captain the Women’s Academy side last year and I can’t wait to be a part of the Women’s set-up at Wigan again this season.
“I’ve grown up as a Wigan fan, going down to the development days and half-term camps when I was younger, so with the Women’s game getting bigger and better with even more opportunities to play for my club, I’m really excited for this coming season and the opportunity to pull on a shirt again for the Academy and first team side.”