Scottish Rugby will relaunch the women’s National Development League this year, to help develop the needs of teams and individuals who are not ready to enter the fray of a fully competitive environment, yet are keen to give rugby a try.
Unlike other competitions, teams and players will meet at a central location in Scotland, to participate in a day of coaching, led by Scottish Rugby, before playing in development matches.
The league will focus on developing each player, through skills specific coaching sessions, to enable the participants to be fully comfortable in a game-like environment before they are willing to enter into a competitive league.
Scottish Rugby hopes that the National Development League will prepare teams, physically and mentally, to enter the BT Women’s National 2 League in the 2015/16 season.
There will be six dates for the National Development league events spanning from September through to April, with an additional fixtures day at the end of the programme.
Scottish Rugby’s Head of Women’s and Girls’ Rugby, Sheila Begbie, said:
“We are really pleased to be running the National Development League programme which is designed to meet the needs of new and developing women’s clubs and players in Scotland.
“The addition of a fixtures day at the end of the season will give teams a feel for what it would be like competing in an official league and provides the opportunity to show they are ready to make the step up into BT Women’s National 2 League the following season.”
A core team – one which does not compete in any of the three BT Women’s Leagues – can enter the National Development League alongside invitational teams. Clubs who compete in the BT Women’s Leagues can also provide sides, yet can only enter players who are deemed appropriate for development league. Discussion with a Scottish Rugby women’s development manager must take place prior to league registered players participating in the development division.
National Development League events will take place on the following dates (venues tbc):