They will be competing in the inaugural 2018 Pacific Military Women’s Rugby Sevens Tournament in Canberra, starting October 9.
The Australian Defence Force holds an annual rugby event between Australia and New Zealand and this is the first year it has been opened up to include policewomen in the Pacific.
As well as training, the women have been selling food and washing cars as part of fundraising for a new uniform, while much of the travel costs have been sponsored by the Australian Defence Force.
Police spokesman Trevor Pitt says the rugby match will come as a fun/competitive end to a week long programme of community engagement involving building relationships with other policewomen in the Pacific, Australia and New Zealand regions.
The Cook Islands Police women’s rugby team has been formed in response to the invitation and many of the women have never played rugby before.
“We only have a playing contingent of about 12 that can go, so there has been some whittling down and a bit of a selection process,” says Pitt. As well there have been a number of injuries.
While the list of players is being finalised, it will depend on the recovery of some from their injuries.
“Team captain Lisa Tatakura is also carrying an injury,” says Pitt, “but she assures me she will be recovered in plenty of time.”