Women's Rugby - December 2018

December 10 2018


Women's Rugby Canada vs England 2018 (Laura Russell)
©

Women's Rugby World Update: Currently 577K Registered Women Playing Rugby; Executive Leadership Scholarships; Women in High Performance Coaching Review; 2021 World Cup



Katie Sadlier, the General Manager Women's Rugby for World Rugby put out a December update "Accelerating the Global Development of Women in Rugby – December 2018". Here are some of the highlights. The full .pdf can be downloaded here.

More women and girls playing

The numbers continue to grow. The KPI for this work stream is to double the number of registered women playing rugby globally. The reports in from the unions show a 27% increase in registered women players since 2017. There are currently 577K registered women playing rugby. This is a 223% increase since 2013. There has been some outstanding “movers and shakers” in the last 12 months and the list below shows some of these.

• Mexico +20%
• India + 32%
• China +164%
• Australia +19%
• Kenya +372%
• Argentina +66%

Regional growth strategic framework - Africa
You may remember in the last update I talked about the progress being made by Rugby Africa
with developing a new strategic framework. This new strategy has now been endorsed by the
Rugby Africa Board. But Africa is not alone here, there is great work and progress happening
in all regions. Can I again encourage you to share your success stories either directly or via
giving us information to put onto the women’s development page of the World Rugby website.

WRWC 2021

Congratulations to NZ for being awarded host of WRWC 2021 and a huge acknowledgement to Rugby Australia for all the work they put into developing what was an incredibly impressive professional bid. Early in the new year we will be announcing the confirmed details of the WRWC 2021 qualification process.

Women in HP Coaching Review

The full report with recommendations was discussed and well received by the Women’s Advisory Committee. The report has a suite of recommendations which have implications for World Rugby, unions and coaches. These recommendations are currently being costed and prioritised. We will look to launch the review and its recommendations at a suitable event early next year. The ultimate vision for this programme is that:

• By 2025 it will be normal for women to be appointed into head coaching positions at a high-performance level.
• Women will see themselves and be seen by others as just “coaches” not female coaches.
• At the 2025 Women’s Rugby World Cup women will make up at least 40% of coaching teams including head coaching roles.
• The makeup of coaching teams both men and women’s programmes will be more diverse.
• There will be a greater prominence of women coaching both male and female teams

Executive Leadership Scholarships

It’s been a great first year with the introduction of the executive leadership scholarship programme, the 2018 recipients have been working on some interesting work. The regional associations are now in the process of considering the second years intakes with a prioritised recommendation list due with World Rugby by the end of January. The 2019 scholarships will be announced on international women’s day 8th March.

Marketing Campaign

I know that many of you have been involved in some capacity on what will be the first global marketing campaign to lift the profile of women in rugby. After going through a competitive tender process, we appointed Matta, a UK based creative agency, to work with us to develop this 3-year campaign that will be introduced in March and launched in April 2019. A letter has gone out to all CEs/Presidents at a union and regional level to notify them about the intended campaign and to get a contact for us to work with to assist with local and regional amplification.

The campaign which is currently in development aims to create an increase in interest and awareness from players, fans and investors.

Diversified Investment

The current base line review into the status of commercial and other investment has been completed. The six regions and 15 Unions provided input into the review. The key recommendations from this independent review are;

• Develop new women’s rugby properties and premiums, identifying potential partners and investors, in particular those from new categories
• Consider a separation of men’s and women’s rugby commercial programmes, to grow investment in the women’s game, including a separate and dedicated agency
to support the sale of the women’s game
• Develop a global women’s rugby brand and communications strategy, to increase profile and awareness of the game, its leaders, talent and impact – focusing initially in those markets where there is a high level of interest and growth in the game
• Lead the development of a value proposition for women’s rugby, securing independent advisory on the valuation of women’s rugby properties to form the
basis of commercial and non-commercial investment in the game
• Ensure that commercial proposals that include women’s rugby properties (bundled proposals), are individually valued and sold on the premise of commercial partner commitment to those properties and their leverage and activation

2019 Objectives

Next Year- year two of the global plan implementation- will be another full on year. Some of the key deliverables being

• We will finalise international competition model through to 2025
• The World Rugby High Performance Academy in Stellenbosch in May will be focused on Women’s Rugby
• We will roll out key recommendations in the HP Coaching review
• We will deploy a global marketing campaign to lift the profile and awareness of Women in Rugby commences in March
• We will announce up to 16 new executive leadership scholarships
• We will confirm and deploy new commercial strategy

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