Today, the York City Knights will look to lift their first Challenge Cup when they face St Helens at Leigh Sports Village.
The game will be broadcast live on the BBC for the first time and for the Knights’ Savannah Andrade it is an “incredible opportunity” to showcase talent within the women’s game.
Andrade is one of seven star recruits to have joined York this year, with the former Bradford Bulls player arriving in North Yorkshire alongside another former Bradford player in Olivia Wood and five former Castleford Tigers players in Rhiannion Marshall, Kelsey Gentles, Tamzin Renouf, Grace. Field Peach and Sinead.
Whatever the outcome later today, there will be a new name in the Women’s Challenge Cup and Andrade believes it shows the rise of talent competing in women’s football.
“It gives more people the opportunity to see women’s rugby. I don’t think that, at the moment, it is proven enough, ”Andrade said, and the final is part of a triple match with the Challenge Cup semifinals being played at the same venue.
“To have such an important game broadcast on live television, which is free, is an incredible opportunity and the girls really appreciate it.
“It’s great that we are playing against men. When we’ve done it in the past, we have more fans in our games or they will see the end of our game if they come to the men’s game. It means that hopefully we can get more fans to support women’s rugby. ”
She added: “I think the girls game will continue to grow with more talent and more competitive games, hopefully.”
York has defeated Wakefield Trinity, Wigan Warriors and Castleford Tigers on their way to the final. The Knights ended the 2019 Super League season with just one win and only avoided finishing last in points difference.
Clearly they are a much more competitive team this year and Andrade feels it is important to the show and the growth of the game that there are more teams that can compete.
“There are some really good teams in the women’s Super League and when they play against each other, it’s always very close and close matches,” Andrade continued.
“That is what people want to see. When I was in Bradford we played St Helens and we lost 86-0, but that’s not good for anyone to see.
“St Helens had a great victory, but it was not a challenging game for them. People want to see games that have them on the edge of their seats. “
The Huddersfield-born center scored a hat-trick in the semi-final against Castleford. She is no stranger to success as she was part of Bradford’s unbeatable 2017 season, which saw them go an entire year undefeated to win the Challenge Cup and Grand Final. The rugby league is hereditary, with his brother, Jordan Andrade, an international from Jamaica who currently practices his trade with Hunslet RFLC.
“I had been in Bradford since I was 16, it was amazing and I had a lot of great opportunities there,” Andrade added.
“We won the Challenge Cup and were undefeated for a year. We saw a lot of players go and I felt like I needed to go to a different team to have a bigger chance.
“I was in two games this season with Bradford and then I got a call from Lindsay Anfield (rugby manager) in York. She has just explained this new adventure she was having with York and that she wanted me to go talk to her and the president.
“We went and talked to them and the president said he wanted to invest a lot of time and money in the women’s game in York and I couldn’t turn down the opportunity. It has been absolutely incredible and I am very happy that it has arrived at this moment. “
Andrade rarely finds himself without a rugby ball in his hands, as when the league season ends, he plays rugby with West Park Leeds and is double-registered with the Premier 15 team, Sale Sharks.
She said: “A rugby coach came to my school when I was in Year 9 and I thought I would give it a try.
“I really enjoyed the session, we did some games with our institute and then I decided to go to their club, which was St Joseph’s in Fartown in Huddersfield.
“I played there until I was 16 and then I went to the Bradford Bulls. When I was 17 I started playing rugby union, so I have been playing league and union for about three years.
“It means that I am playing all year, which is a lot, but also a lot of fun. I started playing union in Doncaster and then I went to West Park Leeds and that’s who I’m signed with now.
“Last November, I had a phone call with the Sale Sharks coach and I went there. I have double records with them and West Park Leeds, but haven’t played for them yet, but that’s the hope for next season. “
Andrade attended All Saints College in Huddersfield, same …
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This notice was published: 2021-06-05 08:40:22