North Newcastle will have three representatives at next month’s World Cup after Caitlin Moran, Isabelle Kelly and Bec Young were named in the 24-player Jillaroos squad on Sunday.
Moran and Kelly will take part in their first World Cup tournaments while dual international Young returns to help Australia’s women’s rugby league team defend their breakthrough title.
Young wore the green and gold in England four years ago but after missing the 17 for the final victory she wants to try and make amends on home soil.
“To be selected in the 24, especially at my age thinking I don’t know how I’ll go here, I’m really happy,” the 35-year-old mother-of-two said.
“He [Jillaroos coach Brad Donald] knows how hard I’ve worked and what it means to me to be there.
“And I’ve talked on many occasions in front of the girls about my disappointment at the last World Cup, playing every round game and not being selected to play in the actual final.
“It made me realise and learn about team dynamics and how to react in that situation and building character.
“It took me a little while to get over, but I’ve got that fire still in my belly so I’ll be pushing for the 17 definitely.”
Young is one of a handful who played in the competition last time around while Moran and Kelly are two of 15 World Cup debutantes.
The Blues trio missed last month’s Jillaroos match in Papua New Guinea because of North Newcastle’s run to the NSW Women’s Premiership grand final, but they played together for Australia in the Anzac Test.
Personal training programs start on Monday with weekend gatherings scheduled in Sydney the rest of this month before going into camp early November.
Australia open with Cook Islands on November 16.
All round games and both semis are scheduled for Shark Park in Cronulla. The final is at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium before the men’s decider on December 2.
Meanwhile, North Newcastle’s 2017 award winners were announced at the club’s presentation at Carrington Bowling Club on Saturday night with Holly Wheeler voted players’ player. Other prizes went to Amy Broadhead (best back), Jerry Burgmann (best forward), Alicia Martin (rookie), Skye Lovett (coaches) and Moran (representative).
FIXTURES: November 16 v Cook Islands (4pm); November 19 v England (1:45pm); November 22 v Canada (4pm); November 26 semi-finals; December 2 final (3:45pm).