Elsie Albert: ex-boxer turned botanist and ground-breaking PNG Rugby League World Cup captain — Women’s Sports Alliance

    “For us the World Cup is a chance to be an inspiration to girls, not just to prove they can play rugby league, but that they can do much more than people tell them they can,” states Papua New Guinea (PNG) captain Elsie Albert.

    Continuing that theme, the 26-year-old reveals to Women’s Sports Alliance Founder Jordan Guard that she “comes from a country where women are often seen as secondary to men,” but Elsie is undeterred and determined to help facilitate change through sport.

    As a youngster she had wanted to become a professional boxer, but her parents disapproved of her becoming involved in a “male dominated” sport.

    At the time she followed their instruction, “otherwise I’d be out in the street” she says with a nervous laugh.

    Moving away from home and to University proved the catalyst for significant changes in her life and she was determined to take control of her own destiny.

    “I’m someone who, if I put my heart and soul into something, I just know I’m going to compete and do what it takes to get what I want,” she tells the WSA Founder Jordan Guard.

    PNG’s women’s team, known as the Orchids, made the World Cup in 2017 while Elsie was studying to become a botanist and an idea was born.

    That said, she was still so nervous about her parent’s response to her taking up rugby league despite the fact the men’s game is considered PNG’s national sport.

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