Watershed Moment For Women In Sport
Whether the sheer enormity of the task at hand has set in for Raelene Castle yet is anyone’s guess, but one thing is for certain: she appears to be completely up to it. Rugby Australia on Tuesday officially announced Castle as its newest Chief Executive, a watershed moment for women in sport. Castle is the first woman at the helm of Rugby Australia as well as being the first to lead any of Australia’s major football codes.
Cameron Clyne has described Castle as being the one applicant who stood out by a landslide, an impressive feat considering that Castle beat more than 200 candidates to the post. That having been said, it would be insulting to insinuate that Raelene Castle’s appointment should come as a surprise. She is by far the most equipped and skilled person for the job and gender is quite irrelevant when looking at the bigger picture.
Castle too, refused to dwell on the gender issue when the announcement was made on Tuesday, appearing to be obviously confident and no-nonsense. In fact, she explicitly dismissed any gender-based proposed discussions as being blatant media fascination. Certainly a trait that is indicative of her resolve to let her performance be the proof in the pudding, instead of riding the wave of gender equality.
Sudden Surge In Interest In Women’s Sport
Castle’s appointment does come amidst increasing interest in women’s sport in Australia, and even the global sporting scene, both from a spectator’s as well as a commercial value point of view. Rugby Australia has obviously realised the importance of buying into the ever-growing market of women in sport. In keeping with the spirit of the importance of women in sport, Rugby Australia has also announced the launch of a Super W competition, a women’s 15’s competition set to kick off in March of 2018.
When one considers the recent crowning of Australia’s Women’s 7’s team as the Women’s 7’s World Champions in Dubai, the weight of the evolution of the importance of women in sport starts to really sink in.
In addition to Castle’s appointment being a landslide moment for the role of women in sport, she is also the first non-Australian to be selected for the position. Castle is a New Zealander and was honoured in New Zealand with the title of Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2015. The honour was awarded to Castle for her enormous contributions to business and sport in the country.
Whichever way you look at it, Castle’s appointment is a true testament to the best person for the job being appointed to do the job.
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