IN HER STRIDE: Australian Jillaroo Chelsea Baker takes training at the Calliope NRL clinic at the weekend as she makes preparation for possible selection next month in the Australian side.
IN HER STRIDE: Australian Jillaroo Chelsea Baker takes training at the Calliope NRL clinic at the weekend as she makes preparation for possible selection next month in the Australian side. Mike Richards GLA

Future bright for women in rugby league

CHELSEA Baker admits she might not see it in her playing time but she can see the future for women in rugby league.

On the back of the AFL's new womens league, Baker says the time will come when the NRL has similar.

The Cronulla Sharks and St George Dragons already have womens teams that will play a 9s match next season and Baker says it should be a case of when, not if, there is an NRL womens league.

"I am confident it will happen.It probably won't be in time for me to play but league is the fastest growing womens sport so I can't see why not," the 30-year-old said.

Baker said there had already been some big advancements in the womens game. Jillaroos players were previously forced to stump up their own costs for travel and equipment but these are now covered.

"We don't get paid but we do get costs covered, which can get up to $5000 for any given game," she said.

"Hopefully we have been paving the way and the future players can benefit in that regard."

The Gladstone-based player said she would be keen to get involved in a coaching capacity if such a league started after her playing days.



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