A new era in women’s football begins tonight in Darwin as the TIO NTFL Women’s Division 2 competition launches at TIO Stadium, Marrara.
Due to the increasing number of women playing football (up 11% female participation across the NT in 2018 compared to 2017), a second division has been created with modified rules and player numbers.
Five clubs have entered including PINT, Southern Districts, St Mary’s, Wanderers, and University Rats (Lady Rats) to feature in the 13-round season. There will also be one week of finals. Teams of 12 players will take to the field under some modified rules aimed at encouraging learning and fun:
- The quarters will run for 12 minutes with no time on
- A maximum of 20 players can be named for each team (12 on field plus eight on the interchange bench). Where both teams have a full 20 players and both coaches agree prior to the match, teams may play with up to 16 on the field.
- Those clubs with an already established TIO NTFL Women’s Premier League team must supply AFLNT with a list of its top 10 players, who will not be permitted to play in the Women’s Division 2 (except under exceptional circumstance as granted by AFLNT, ie. returning from injury).
- A player who played in the TIO NTFL Women’s Premier League on the same round (considered to be the weekend prior to the Wednesday night) is ineligible to play in the Women’s Division 2 that same round.
Emily Wastle-Hopkins, AFL Northern Territory’s Manager of Community Football and Club Development said the competition will provide a platform for expansion of the women’s competition in the future.
“Given the demand, now was the right time to expand and we encourage more clubs to get involved as the season progresses.
“It’s really exciting to have more and more women wanting to play football each year and for clubs with no current Women’s Premier league team to participate,” said Wastle-Hopkins.
The full fixture and results will be uploaded to the NTFL SportsTG website and can be found here.