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Victorians join rugby league in record numbers

2023 will go down as a milestone year for rugby league in Victoria with a record number of players joining local competitions around the state. 

Over 4,500 registered footy players have already registered across men's, women's and junior competitions, breaking the previous 2019 record of 4,431 players. 

With 30 clubs across Victoria and more than 250 teams in metropolitan competitions, playing in the Storm Premiership and Storm Junior League, the game has seen record-growth state-wide. 

Players are also joined by over 1,000 registered volunteers and 99 referees maintaining the game’s smooth operation both on and off-field. 

The growth has also seen female participation increase by 43%, prompting five clubs to field teams in the women’s first-grade competition this year, providing more opportunities than ever for females to play rugby league in Victoria.

NRL Victoria General Manager Brent Silva shared the news, particularly highlighting the hard-work involved from the grassroots communities behind the scenes.  

“It is exciting to see record numbers back out at community Rugby League clubs, playing in the Storm Junior League and Storm Premierships across the state,” he said. 

This incredible achievement of record registrations at community clubs is a testament to the resilience, persistence and passion shown by volunteers across the community after some challenging times and it certainly would not have been possible without their efforts. 

Brent Silva NRL Victoria General Manager

“The significant jump to reach record junior numbers and female participants highlights the work being done in the community to make this a game for all.” 

It’s not too late to sign up to your local club! Head to to join now! 

All participants, players, volunteers and coaches can redeem a free Storm two-game digital membership when they register via Play Rugby League. Parents/guardians and siblings of registered participants can purchase a discounted two-game digital for adults at $25 or a junior at $15. 

Acknowledgement of Country

Melbourne Storm respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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