Leeds Rhinos Foundation and Leeds City College are delighted to announce that Women’s Rugby League legend Lois Forsell will coach the newly formed Leeds Rhinos Foundation Girls Rugby League Development Academy.
Forsell, 29, who is the current Head Coach of the Leeds Rhinos Women’s Super League team, will take up the position with the Development Academy as part of her work with Leeds Rhinos Foundation as its Women and Girls Rugby League Development Officer.
The former Leeds Rhinos player and England international has been instrumental in the growth of the Women’s game and hopes to continue developing the next generation of female players in her latest role.
“It is great to see the Girls Development Academy get underway at Leeds City College this year and I am really looking forward to being involved,” said Forsell. “We have seen the developments and progress made by players in the Boys Development Academy working under the tutorship of Dan Hardy and I am looking forward to replicating that with the girls.”
The Leeds Rhinos Foundation Development Academy is an addition to the Rhinos Women’s Pathway programme, which includes an U16 and U19 Academy and will be another opportunity for players in the city to represent the Rhinos.
“It’s a unique opportunity for players to represent two fantastic local institutions and gain access to our first class training facilities,” added Forsell. “We have worked hard in Leeds to create a clear pathway for girls playing Rugby League, from grassroots to the elite level of Women’s Super League. I am confident this is another great addition to that pathway and will help us to continue improving standards throughout the game.”
The Development Academy aims to provide student athletes with the best possible environment to succeed both on and off the pitch, with its elite coaching and training provision alongside a wide variety of academic and vocational course options with partners Leeds City College. Launching this September, the new Girls Development Academy will look to build on the huge success enjoyed by the boys team in their first season as a Development Academy in 2019-20.
Head of Sport at Leeds City College Ryan Grant said: “We are delighted to bring Lois Forsell on board to support the Leeds Rhinos Foundation Girls Development Academy in its first season.
“Having someone of Lois’ calibre shows the intent and commitment that both Leeds City College and Leeds Rhinos Foundation have to growing the Women and Girls game and providing a first class offer for our student athletes. Working with Lois will inspire the girls to raise their aspirations, improve their skills and provide a realistic pathway for progression, both on the field and academically with their studies.”
Head of Community and Engagement for Leeds Rhinos Foundation Gareth Cook said: “We are extremely proud of our long-standing partnership with Leeds City College and the growth of our programme over the last few years has been outstanding.
“Education has always come first with the Development Academy and in 2020 players will be able to choose from an extensive list of more than 30 courses to study. We look forward to another successful year and thank Leeds City College for their continued support as we help students to achieve their full academic and athletic potential.”
Spaces are still available, and any boys or girls looking to join the Leeds Rhinos Development Academy are encouraged to register their interest today by visiting www.leedscitycollege.ac.uk.
For more information on the Leeds Rhinos Development Academy, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.