Four Hunter rugby league stars have been named in the first ever women’s Prime Minister’s XIII, including NRLW representatives Hannah Southwell, Melanie Howard and Holli Wheeler, and NSW Origin veteran Bec Young.

Last year saw the national womens side play as a Jillaroo-select side in last year’s double header with the men’s Prime Minister’s XIII, and now this year both sides have been formalised as PM-representative squads.

Southwell, Howard and Wheeler have earned their selections off the back of a strong debut NRL Womens campaign with the St George Illawarra Dragons, who finished fourth with a 1-2 record.

Bec Young, who has long been involved in the development of women’s rugby league in Newcastle, NSW and Australia, was snubbed for an NRL women’s club contract in 2018, but earned selection in the PM’s XIII thanks to her stellar season in the state league, and her outing as a Blues representative in the first Women’s State of Origin.

Young has been named as captain for the squad. She will take to the field as a starting prop, while Southwell will play in the centres. Wheeler has been named as a starting forward, and Howard will provide key impact off the pine.

Full Squad: 1 Rikeya Horne, 2 Shakiah Tungai, 3 Hannah Southwell, 4 Patricia Raikadroka, 5 Rhiannon Revell-Blair, 6 Keeley Davis, 7 Quincy Dodd, 8 Rebecca Young, 9 Juraea Turner, 10 Asipau Mafi, 11 Sally Dwyer, 12 Talesha Quinn, 13 Holli Wheeler, 14 Michaela Peck, 15 Najvada George, 16 Eliza Wilson, 17 Aaliyah Fasavalu-Fa’amausili, 18 Melanie Howard, 19 Sarah Togatuki.