OUR girls national teams in various sports have recently been very successful. Some may moan when they have been beaten in national finals but my view is that they have performed fabulously to reach their respective finals.

A few years ago the FA, in their wisdom (if that is not a contradiction in terms) seriously restricted girls playing in mixed junior teams. Today too few girls are playing in mixed teams or at all but what may not be well known is that the FA have more than reversed their previous ill-thought out rules and now girls can play in mixed teams up to the age of 18.

North Yorkshire is a large but sparsely populated county and girls-only football is largely confined to the Teesside and York areas.

I would urge girls outside those areas to get involved with clubs offering mixed teams. Hopefully this will encourage more girls’ participation and consequently, ultimately, expansion of girls-only leagues. In the same context it would be appropriate to have more female coaches, referees etc.

Those interested should contact their local clubs, the North Riding County FA, or, for those in our league area (roughly west of the A19), myself.

David Williams – Chairman Hambleton & Richmondshire Junior Football League