RUGBY league side Silsden Stormettes have secured a real coup, with Featherstone Rovers star and England international Jessica Courtman joining the club.

Courtman, who has eight caps for her country, will be joining Silsden as the club's new Girls Development Officer and coach.

Courtman will work closely with girls from all age groups at the club, as well as being an assistant coach for the newly-formed Under-11s Stormettes team.

In a club statement, the Stormettes said: "This is a massive step for the club in terms of building our girls section at Silsden.

"Jess has a lot of experience in domestic and international rugby league and is keen to share that with the girls.

"She will play a key part behind the scenes to help the girls section grow and be noticed moving forward.

"Girls and women's rugby league is one of the fastest growing sports in the world and to have someone join the club of Jessica's calibre is fantastic for us.

"As a club, we can't wait for lockdown to be over so we can get back to training and get Jessica down to start her role."

Silsden held a Q&A with Courtman after announcing she was joining the club, and you can view that here:

Q: Why is it important for junior clubs to run a girls section?

A: With the women’s game growing at such a quick rate over the past few years, it is very important that we implement more opportunities at grassroots for girls.

The English Women’s international scene is bigger and better than it's ever been in terms of opportunity and spotlight for our women’s team.

So if we can introduce more girls teams within community clubs, it makes that pool of players bigger to select from and ultimately benefits the women’s game as a whole, alongside introducing more girls to such a rewarding sport.

There is definitely a lot of undiscovered talent in England and we need to catch this at a young age to give our country even more chance of international success in years to come.

Q: How do you see the girls and women's game looking in the next 10 years?

A: The girls and women’s game has grown so much over the past 10 years, so it’s very exciting to think about the next 10.

I hope to see even more publicity for both the women and girls in terms of media and promotion.

I want even more push in terms of branching out to a broader audience across the country, to show just how impressive our game is.

Q: What are your plans going forward in your role to help Silsden's girls section grow?

A: My main goal going forward in my role at Silsden is to offer growth and build the profile of the girls game within the community and surrounding areas.

I want to make the prospect of rugby league exciting to girls from a young age and I want to offer more opportunities for girls to get involved.

So hopefully by organising more taster days, giving talks in local primary/secondary schools and planning a wide range of girls tournaments for people to come down and participate in/watch, it will help girls and their parents catch the bug of the game we know and love.

Q: Are you looking forward to starting? And why?

A: I’m very eager to get going in this role at Silsden; after such a disappointing year in terms of opportunity for development in 2020, I see this year as paramount.

We need to push the growth of our girls game even more and I feel privileged and happy to be a part of this at Silsden.