AFL Victoria has launched a new TAC Cup Girls competition.
In an exciting partnership with the Transport Accident Commission (TAC), the 12 team league will mirror the TAC Cup for boys, responsible for developing many of the biggest names in the AFL.
AFL Victoria and the TAC have been working over a number of years at establishing girls academies within the TAC Cup boys’ structure, to give young female footballers the same opportunities as their male counterparts via Towards Zero Girls Academies.
The TAC has supported the elite boys’ pathway since its inception in 1992 and will now provide the same leadership and mentoring opportunities to junior female footballers with their sights set on a career in the AFL.
AFL Victoria CEO Steven Reaper said thefootball pathway in Victoria for males and females is now complete.
“Within footy circles, the TAC Cup has become synonymous with producing some of the games top talent,” Reaper said. “With the launch of TAC Cup Girls, we’re really excited to see Victoria’s female talent develop and one day play on the main stage in the NAB AFL W or Swisse VFL Women’s competitions.”
“It’s about creating a new generation of leaders and role-models for young Victorian females, and the support of TAC will help us achieve that.
“We can already see the first round of young women to come out of the Towards Zero Girls Academies into the AFLW having a profound effect on our community, and we look forward to seeing that continue to grow with TAC Cup Girls.”
AFLW talent like Katherine Smith (Sandringham Dragons / Melbourne), Lily Mithen (Geelong Falcons-Western Jets / Melbourne), Isabella Ayre (Bendigo Pioneers / Carlton), Deanna Berry (Calder Cannons / Melbourne) and Georgia Walker (Dandenong Stingrays / Collingwood) were all part of the Towards Zero Girls Academy program in 2016, with previous Academy graduates including Carlton vice-captain Madeline Keryk (a guest at the launch held at Ikon Park), Western Bulldogs Ellie Blackburn and GWS Giant Louise Stephenson.
The new under 18 girls competition will replace the academy program, but continue to develop great footballers while empowering players to serve as positive role models, encouraging good driving behaviour among their peers and helping Victoria achieve its Towards Zero vision for a safer future on our roads.
Victorian Minister for Roads and Road Safety Luke Donnellan said the partnership will continue to educate young drivers about road safety.
“The TAC’s partnership with AFL Victoria and junior football pathways is about creating champions on the field and safe drivers on the roads.”
“It’s not only boys who play football, just like it’s not only boys who die on our roads. TAC Cup Girls gives our best young female footballers a shot at the big stage while helping to develop a new generation of safe young drivers.”
The competition starts on March 4 with Murray Bushrangers versus Bendigo Pioneers at Punt Road Oval, and will feature five rounds in the inaugural season, which will be expanded in future years.
- CLICK HERE for the fixture
In a similar move to the AFL Victoria’s VFL competitions (Peter Jackson VFL and Swisse VFL Women’s), the TAC Cup social media and online accounts will operate through the one channel at taccup.com.au, @TACCup #TACCupGirls (twitter) and TACCupfooty (Facebook).
For more information on how the new TAC Cup Girls competition will run, please CLICK HERE…