This week, there has been a marketing campaign for the Irish Rugby shirt which used male rugby players in their advertising. The photos were appropriate, and looked great. This is clearly great marketing. However, the Irish Women’s rugby jersey was modelled not by female rugby players, but by models. Why might that be an issue? We asked Cath Ansell, one of our Sale 1861 players to respond.
Oh women’s rugby that’s interesting, it can’t be full contact though?’
‘It’s not as exciting as men’s’
‘You don’t look like a rugby player!’
Since starting rugby I’ve learnt to take a lot of these comments with a bitter smile. Lately these off-hand sexist comments have been shown on a larger platform: “models are better looking”, “the men are muscly and well groomed”, “female rugby players aren’t aesthetically pleasing”.
In 2020 I didn’t think I’d have to say this: The women I have met since playing sport and especially rugby are beautiful, strong, confident, and are role models for for the next generation of women. #iamenough
Our women’s team, Sale 1861, has created a real buzz about the future of Sale FC. Every women’s rugby player has added to the Sale FC family and is valued.
Sale FC President James Hourihan adds
When I was chair of minis and juniors, I stated that without a women’s section we would never be a complete club, we started slowly to achieve this with under 18’s. Scott Bambrick dedicated an entire year to getting more women within Sale FC with the support of Sale Sharks and other volunteers. It has taken the hard work and dedication of the executive, volunteers and players to get off the ground. What has been most rewarding for us as a club is how much it has improved us.
We have a long way to go. We need to develop a strong girls section and we must increase the profile of women’s rugby in the North West. But, we have the desire for it and to us the women’s section is what completes our club. #enough #sale1861