first_imgAn Australian Women’s Invitational Beach Footy Team will take on the best the National Rugby League (NRL) has to offer in the Inaugural Harvey Norman Beach Footy challenge at Sydney’s Maroubra Beach this weekend 16-17 December 2006.The 8 member Australian Women’s Invitational Team will consist of talented National Youth Squad members and two-time Australian Women’s Open World Cup winner Giselle Martin (Tirado) as captain for the two day event.The Young Guns of Australian Women’s Touch will be battling it out for their share of $100,000 in prizemoney for the charity of their choice.The weekend promises to be a memorable occasion with fashion parades, live musical performances, and non-stop high quality Beach Footy action and entertainment for participants and spectators alike.The event is already gathering mass media exposure with broadcast event partners Nova 96.9 FM, Channel Nine, and News Limited publications such as The Daily Telegraph and the Courier Mail widely advertising the Inaugural tournament and a number of media events occuring to consolidate the tournament’s exposure.Members of the Australian Invitational Beach Footy Team and Australia’s 2007 Women’s Open World Cup Team will attend a photo opportunity Thursday at Maroubra Beach as part of a four page feature on the tournament appearing in the Daily Telegraph Newspaper on Friday 15 December 2006.The Harvey Norman Beach Footy Series will be recorded by Channel Nine and shown in the lead-up to the 2007 NRL Premiership around February and March.The Australian Women’s Invitational Beach Footy team will compete in a six team round robin format over two days. Games will be 15 minutes duration, comprising 2 x 5 minute halves and a 5 minute half-time break.The Women’s team will face off on the sand against four NRL based teams – Maroons, Blues, Young Guns, and Kiwis, as well as a Celebrity team.The Maroons team will feature 2006 “Golden Boot” award winner and Kangaroo Captain Darren Lockyer, and fellow Broncos Brent Tate, the Berrigan brothers Shaun and Barry. and  Melbourne Storm’s Cameron Smith.The Blues will be led by Dragons superstar Mark Gasnier and will feature players such as Matt Cooper, Luke O’Donnell, Willie Mason, and Blues luminaries Brad Fittler and Ryan Girdler. The Young Guns will be captained by Billy Slater, and will have rising stars Travis Burns, Trent Cutler, and Brett Morris amongst their ranks.The Kiwis are sure to bring plenty flair and footwork to the contest with All Black Rugby legends Jerry Collins and Nonu Ma’a leading the way with Nigel Vaagana, and Dave FA’ Alogo, and Tyran Smith set to make their mark.The Celebrity team will be spearheaded by Gordon Tallis, with Lachlan Murdoch, Davis Cup Tennis Captain Wally Masur, newly crowned seven time World champion surfer Layne Beachley, and golfer Peter Lonard gearing up for the tournament challenge.Boxers Kostya Tszyu and  Anthony Mundine, Wallaby Lote Tuquiri, AFL star Nick Reiwoldt and arguably the world’s best Rugby League player of the modern era, Andrew “Joey” Johns are also set to take to the sand. The Women’s Beach Footy team features this country’s brightest up and coming female Touch Football talent.The team is: SKWARKO, Amanda HAMMETT, Belinda 2 6 HULBERT, Alyce 4 1 7 5center_img COOPER, Dearne DOBBINS, Ash BECK, Nicole 8 MARTIN, Giselle (Captain) HOPKIN, Emily 3 The Women’s team will be captained by Giselle Martin (nee Tirado), former Australian Women’s Open dual World Cup winner in 1995 and 1999, and the sport’s pin-up girl of the 1990’s. Still super fit and full of running, ‘Giz’ will provide fantastic leadership, experience, and inspiration to a combination big on potential, skill level, and ability in both attack and defence all over the park.All players are current Youth World Cup representatives, and have been identified as suitable candidates for the National 20 Years Youth Squad preparing for the 2009 FIT Youth World Cup.The players have been selected for their athleticism, skill level, fitness, vision, and team skills, and are regarded as amongst the hottest playing property on the Australian Touch Football scene today.Nicole Beck at 18, is a current member of the National Women’s Open training squad, and made her debut for the New South Wales Women’s Open State of Origin team in 2006.The team also contains 2005 Youth World Cup championship winning 18 Years Mixed representative Belinda Hammett, and 2005 Youth World Cup Player of the Series in the 18 Years Girls division, Emily Hopkin.Beck, Ash Dobbins, and Amanda Skwarko, “The Three Muskateers” from the Southern Suns franchise, bring a wonderful understanding and accord to the mix of players, whilst Alyce “The Rat’ Hulbert and Belinda “Bindoss” Hammett, teammates at club, regional, State and National squad level, bring a similar level of balance and combination to the side.Games will commence at 10.00 am and go through until 4.30pm Saturday 16 December.Round games will recommence Sunday 17 December at 11.00am, with semi-finals at 3.00pm and 3.30pm and the Grand Final commencing at 4.30pm.Further details including the draw and  team composition, will be updated here in coming days.Get down to Maroubra Beach on the weekend for a fantastic festive atmosphere, and to see the young guns of Australian Touch do battle out on the sand against the superstars of the NRL in the Inaugural Harvey Norman Beach Footy Series.last_img

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