The Rugby Union Women’s National team in the 15s format of the game have two chances to qualify for the World Cup – one, during the Women’s Oceania rugby Championships, and the other, a repechage match to be hosted in Papua New Guinea.
Papua New Guinea has the opportunity to qualify for the 2021 Womens Rugby Union 15’s World Cup in New Zealand. The national 15’s women’s team, the Palais, have had a pool of 60 plus women to choose from, so the team can qualify for the World Cup.
The team has been preparing for the upcoming Oceania Championships in Fiji for a chance to qualify. Among the 60 plus women there are former rugby league nationals as well, Joan Kuman and Mala Mark are two fast-paced players, former Orchids representatives and in the mix as well Cathy Neap, the inaugural Orchids captain.
Coach John Pangkatana says that women who have the potential to be good rugby union players are considered irrespective of their sporting affiliations.
Australia and New Zealand have qualified for the tournament which leaves two sports open and the upcoming Oceania Women’s tournament in Fiji serves as a direct qualifier.
But PNG needs to finish first or second against Fiji, Samoa and Tonga if PNG finishes second they play the repechage for a second chance.
By Fidelis Sukina – EMTV News, Port Moresby