Sport

Aussie passion embraces league

GAME ON MOVE: Ladies Football League founder Tala Schultz (left) runs through some drills with Dallas Diamonds player and former US women’s national team player Jen Welter.
GAME ON MOVE: Ladies Football League founder Tala Schultz (left) runs through some drills with Dallas Diamonds player and former US women’s national team player Jen Welter. David Nielsen

DALLAS Diamonds gridiron star Jen Welter has been in Ipswich promoting the Ladies Football League (LFL) of Australia and has been overwhelmed by the passion of locals for the game.

Welter was invited to Australia by the LFL and is assisting to promote the competition and see it prosper.

"I have been following the ladies from early on…and I have been blessed to see them blossom," she said.

"The support they have received has been overwhelming and it makes me so happy to see how it has been embraced here by the people of Ipswich.

"It has been a very positive experience overall.

"I can't think of many other places in the world where the culture is so open to contact sport."

Ladies Football League Australia executive director and founder Tala Schultz is pushing to have the headquarters of the league in Ipswich.

There are five gridiron teams in south-east Queensland with the Ipswich Miners the local side.

Teams are being set up in all states.

"It is a national league that teaches women the game of gridiron and adds to the smorgasbord of sports in Australia," Schultz said.

"We want to empower women to be fit, funky and fabulous and to be driven to stay fit.

"The Ladies Football League of Australia brought Jen out here from a consultative and experienced professional athlete's point of view to assist us to continue to set this up.

"She is our crystal ball."

Schultz said the competition had received tremendous support from the Ipswich Sports House and Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale.

Welter was a guest speaker at the LFL presentation night recently where she encouraged the girls and gave them a vision of where the sport can go.

She also put a few of the girls through some drills and gave them some pointers.

"That was a lot of fun because the girls just want to learn and get better," she said.

Welter is a line-backer for the Diamonds in the US Women's Football Alliance.

She is an eight-time All Star player and has won four championships with the Diamonds.

Welter was also in the inaugural US women's team that won the gold medal at the 2010 Women's World Championships where she was selected in the All World team.

Welter was a prop in rugby union at college where she was a pocket rocket at five foot two and half the size of the other girls.

She got her chance to play full contact gridiron and took to it like a duck to water.

Like Ipswich legend Allan Langer, she showed that size doesn't matter when you have the talent and a big heart.

"I wasn't sure if I would make it because of my size, which is what held me back in rugby," she said.

"But I knew if I didn't try it, I would never forgive myself.

"I sucked it up and tried it anyway.

"That has been a hallmark of me as a player. I was always the little, feisty one."

Topics:  gridiron




Introducing Winter, Diesel, Rusty and Benson

Winter is coming - hopefully to a home with you. But don't worry, I won't bring cold and terror to your lives (like on Game of Thrones). My aim is to bring you love and fun . I am full of beans and ready for adventure .

Phone the RSPCA on 3426 9999 for more details about these animals

Latest deals and offers

Recycling your childhood faves

GHOST GIRL: Melissa McCarthy, Kate McKinnon, Kristen Wiig and Leslie Jones in a scene from Ghostbusters.

Everything that's old is new again

Guy Sebastian a hit at Splendour in the Grass

Guy Sebastian performs at Splendour in the Grass with Paces.

REALITY TV judge a hit with festival crowd.

Superheroes of the big screen enjoy sounds of Splendour

CHRIS Hemsworth and his Avengers mates drop by Byron festival.

Indigenous artist shows tourists secrets of Aboriginal painting

Ever thought "I could do that" about Aboriginal art?

Dynamic pics from Splendour Day 1

The Strokes perform at Splendour in the Grass 2016. Photo Marc Stapelberg / The Northern Star

Check out the latest pictures from Splendour in the Grass.

Bindi Irwin: 18 magic photos to mark her 18th birthday

Bindi Irwin with a python.

Photos: Bindi Irwin from babyhood to 18

You can own this Queensland town for just $1

Yelarbon

Unprecedented auction of town's business centre with no reserve

Work starts on $15M Caloundra apartment building

Turning the first sod at the Aqua View Apartments site in Kings Beach are (from left) husband-and-wife developers Alex Yuan and Stella Sun with construction company Tomkins director Mike Tomkins and Councillor Tim Dwyer.

Developers excited about addition to Kings Beach skyline

72-year-old Coast developer set to start new project

GREEN LIGHT: The Cosmopolitan has been approved for development at Cotton Tree.

Meet the Canberran set to deliver another chapter for Coast suburb

Plans revealed for 1500-lot 'master-planned community'

Precinct will be bounded by Boundary St and Shoesmith Rd

Ecco Ripley sales run sparks prime release

MOVING IN: Sekisui House has announced the release of more residential blocks at Ecco Ripley.

Sekisui House is preparing to unveil more land at Ecco Ripley

The climb is slow but property on the way up

Michael Matusik, director of Matusik Property Insights.Photo Allan Reinikka / The Morning Bulletin

The improvement would be mild when compared to past cycles