THE FUTURE: Queensland Touch data has shown a 21% increase in female participation at the Junior State Cup since 2015. More than 20 extra female teams have entered the annual competition.
THE FUTURE: Queensland Touch data has shown a 21% increase in female participation at the Junior State Cup since 2015. More than 20 extra female teams have entered the annual competition. Alistair Brightman

Qld Touch numbers show the future is female

TOUCH football caters to more young women than ever before based on participation data from this week's Queensland Touch Junior State Cup.

Every team at the annual junior carnival, the biggest event on the state organisation's calendar, will be in action today, with finals this afternoon.

It will end the biggest Junior State Cup in its 23-year history, where more girls than ever before have competed.

An analysis of the three-day carnival's fixtures shows more females play the nationally growing sport than males.

DEBUT: This was the first time Bribie Island brought a team to the Junior State Cup.
DEBUT: This was the first time Bribie Island brought a team to the Junior State Cup. Alistair Brightman

This year's Junior State Cup involves 12 more female teams than last year across the five age groups, while the boys' overall team numbers have decreased by four. The most pronounced increase came in the under-14s, where six more girls' teams competed this year than last year.

Since 2015, the number of female teams competing at the Junior State Cup has increased by 21 (20.4 per cent). Only two more boys' teams are competing this week than did in 2015.

Queensland Touch CEO Ben Mannion said the sport's five access points - boys, girls, men, women and mixed - had ensured touch football was accessible to a wide portion of the sporting community.

"We've definitely had that accessibility but we've to get more girls to participate in the sport,” Mr Mannion said.

"The numbers for Touch Football Australia are skewed 56-44 towards males, and that's based on a database of more than 280,000 players. We have to keep promoting the opportunity for girls to continue to play, and push our fun, safe, inclusive environment.”



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