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Wests Tigers sign international trio for Harvey Norman women's season

Wests Tigers are pleased to announce the signings of three international representative players ahead of the 2022 Harvey Norman NSW Women’s Premiership season.

Following a strong season in 2021, Wests Tigers will be bolstered further by the re-signing of international fullback and captain Botille Vette-Welsh as well as the signing of Dally M Medallists Kezie Apps and Jessica Sergis.

The addition of the three representative stars will strengthen Wests Tigers for the 2022 season, following a successful 2021 campaign that saw the women’s team qualify for the finals before COVID-19 forced the competition to be suspended. 

Jillaroos stars Sergis and Apps will join Wests Tigers after they both featured for Helensburgh Tigers in the 2021 Harvey Norman NSW Women’s Premiership season.

One of the elite outside backs of the game, Sergis has competed at the highest level, having represented Australia and New South Wales over the past five seasons.

The 24-year-old received the game’s highest honour when she was named the Dally M Medallist for Women's Player of the Year in 2019.

Apps joins Wests Tigers with a wealth of experience, having played for 11 Tests for the Jillaroos and eight matches for the Blues.

The 30-year-old backrower has received numerous awards across her career, including the 2016 Dally M Medal and the NSWRL State Player of the Year in 2014 and 2016.

Jess Sergis and Kezie Apps in the NSW Origin side
Jess Sergis and Kezie Apps in the NSW Origin side ©NRL Photos

Both players are primed for big 2022 campaigns — in which they’ll begin the year playing in the NRLW competition. Apps will once again feature for St George Illawarra, while Sergis has switched from the Dragons to the Sydney Roosters. 

Captain of Wests Tigers side for the past three seasons, Vette-Welsh has re-signed with the club after an impressive 2021 season that saw the fullback earn a number of representative honours.

One of the standout players across the season, Vette-Welsh featured for the Maori All Stars, City Origin and New South Wales sides and is set to play for the Parramatta Eels in the upcoming NRLW competition.

Wests Tigers CEO Justin Pascoe welcomed the new signings and said he was excited by the continued progress being made by the club’s women’s program.

“On behalf of all at Wests Tigers, I’d like to welcome Kezie and Jess to the club and say how excited we are to have them on board this year,” Pascoe said. “They are both world-class players who have performed at the highest levels in the game and will certainly add a great deal of experience, talent and professionalism to our team. 

“We’re also very pleased to have Botille remain with Wests Tigers — she has been an integral part of our club over a number of seasons and has been a big part of the progress made in our women’s program.

Botille Vette-Welsh in action for Wests Tigers during the 2021 season
Botille Vette-Welsh in action for Wests Tigers during the 2021 season ©NRL Photos

“As a club, we’re really excited by the direction and the progress that has been made throughout our women’s pathways program as we strive for an NRLW licence in 2023,” Pascoe said.

Having world-class players who want to be part of what we’re building at the club is exciting and we’re looking forward to watching them in a Wests Tigers jersey.

Justin Pascoe

In addition to the recruitment of Apps, Sergis and Vette-Welsh, Wests Tigers are also pleased to confirm the signing of representative playmaker Tayla Preston as well as Christian Pio, who returns to the club having played previously in 2020.

New South Wales U/19’s forward Hope Tevaga has also re-signed with the club and will be promoted from the Tarsha Gale Cup to the senior side alongside local juniors Emily and Sophie Curtain, who were already under contract for the 2022 season.

Wests Tigers Harvey Norman NSW Women’s Premiership team will begin its initial pre-season training in the coming weeks before players with NRLW commitments will return to the team full-time in April in the lead-up to the 2022 campaign.