By Lawrence Machado
Norwest Bulls Junior Rugby Club is making big strides in the new season, welcoming more female players as their teams expand.
Bulls vice-president Dennis Nothdurft said they had a terrific start last weekend as the Sydney junior rugby union season got underway.
“Our Under-14s exemplify the benefits of fostering inclusion and development,” Dennis said. “The team includes five girls in the Sydney Under-14 A Grade competition and are unbeaten after three trial games and round one fixture.”
The Bulls are fielding teams from Under-6s to Under-16s, including two in Under-10s, one coached by Dennis. In the recent rain-hit Sizzling Sevens girls competition, their Under-11s and Under-15s did well, with plans to boost their female program for the next round.
“We’ve worked hard with our neighbouring clubs to provide rugby opportunities for kids all over Sydney’s north-west, joining with Hawkesbury Valley JRC and Hills in Under-15s and with Hills in Under-16s to form joint venture teams,” Dennis said.
Dennis’ eldest son, Lachlan, is a qualified referee while the younger boy, Harry, plays in the Under-15 joint venture team.
The current club president is David Ogier, who has a strong committee that works well together.
In the opening round of the Sydney competition, the Bulls mini teams were hosted by Dundas JRUC with the Under-8s and Under-9s playing strongly against the Western Raptors and Hills, respectively. Other Bulls teams played their first-round games mainly at Alwyn Lindfield Reserve, Glenwood.
“Like everyone else, our past two seasons have been cut short by COVID, but our families have bounced back and we’ve managed to increase our overall playing numbers,” Dennis said. “We’ve got over 200 registered boys and girls playing 15-a-side and 7s rugby, a far cry from the less than 70 when I first came to the Bulls.
“We attribute our growth to our commitment to providing an enjoyable experience for all our families, and encouraging teamwork on and off the field. We have many volunteers willing to make great experiences for our kids.
“Many players play representative rugby for the Western Two Blues District Juniors based in Granville, offering them a natural pathway into the Shute Shield Colts competition, and from there into Sydney Premiership rugby. Blacktown Warriors, which shares the Glenwood field with us, are a local pathway option in the NSW Suburban Rugby Union for the Bulls.”
The Bulls welcome players from Acacia Gardens, Box Hill, Bella Vista, Glenwood, Kellyville, Parklea, Quakers Hill, Schofields, Stanhope Gardens, The Ponds and surrounding areas.