The Force behind the Orchid’s Pack

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She was everywhere yesterday in Orchid’s historic win over England.  It was the first ever test win for the Papua New Guinea Women’s Rugby League team, the Orchids, and leading from the front was their inspirational captain Elsie Albert.

Charging towards the English defensive line, Albert proved to be a handful that required not one and not two but three English defenders to bring her down.

In defence, the powerful Orchid’s captain was brutal.  So brutal, the English attackers shied away from her in attack.

Albert is in her third year for a Bachelor of Tropical Agriculture degree at the University of Natural Resources and Environment in Rabaul.

While she deals with insects and plants off the field, on the field, she is quite the opposite and comes with much more power and pain than an insect bite.

Albert is only 23 years old and still in her second year with the Orchids, it’s promising to see that she still has so many years to offer the national women’s team which is really still learning the ropes of international rugby league.  And that’s a positive sign for PNG rugby league too considering that she is already leading the team as their captain and an inspirational one too.

Earlier this year, Albert spoke to Margie McDonald a senior reporter of the NRL, while she was down there in Sydney for the World Cup 9’s.

When asked by McDonald what she loved about the sport:

It unites all the people back home, and the second thing is I love the physicality about it”.

And she showed just how much she loved the physicality of it yesterday with several bone crunching tackles against the Englishwomen at the National Football Stadium yesterday.

Looking ahead, Albert says that most of the PNG girls want the same thing and that is to have a PNG team in the NRLW.

I hope it will happen in my time as a player and it  should.  I’ve got no plans to stop playing any time soon … to see PNG women in the NRL, I would love that.

Just in case you’ve missed some of Albert’s biggest hits, you can see the video below.