With 2013 marking the Women’s Tackle Football Championships, three members of the Manitoba Fearless have been named to the Canadian national team. With Canada having claimed the silver medal in the 2010 World Women’s Championship, the members of the Fearless are hoping to bring Canada the golden touch.
Competing in the Western Women’s Canadian Football League, the Fearless qualified for the 2012 playoffs before falling to the eventual league champion, the Saskatoon Valkyries.
Roxanna Cox, the starting quarterback for the Fearless, was named to the national squad as a wide receiver. Like her two other teammates from the Fearless (Pauline Olynik and Lisa Klaverkamp), it marks her first time named to the national team. Having started in touch football during the 2000s, being named brought with it great reward and excitement for the competitive Cox.
“It was extremely rewarding to be named to the 2013 national team. I worked very hard in the gym, working out five or six days a week. I also played on several indoor, touch football teams over the winter.”
“Growing up, my main sport was volleyball. When I dreamed of representing my country, it was always as a volleyball player. It is neat to be able to look back now and see how things turned out. I am completely honored to be able to represent Canada.”
Olynik, a defensive back, is entering her sixth season with the Fearless. After all the years of contributing to the squad, her hard work gained her recognition with a nod to the national roster.
“It was an honor to be considered and now it feels amazing to be chosen to represent Canada in rapidly growing sport in our country. I still feel like I'm dreaming and I am anxious to get to camp and meet my fellow teammates.”
A linebacker on the Fearless, Klaverkamp will be part of the Canadian defense hoping to contain the offenses from opposing nations. At 40 years of age, Klaverkamp is an ageless wonder whose enthusiasm for the game knows no limits. Employed as a certified general accountant, her exposure to the sport holds a touch of irony.
“I took my daughter to sign up for football six years ago and got talked into signing up myself. My daughter didn’t stay on, but I was hooked after the first practice! I’ve played quite a few sports in my time and football is different than all of them.”
“It’s really a remarkable game—12 different people doing 12 different things every play to accomplish a single goal and the feeling of camaraderie is incredible. So I guess what motivated me to start playing was peer pressure, but what motivates me to keep playing is an absolute love for the game and my team.”
Klaverkamp was ecstatic when she received the news of being named to the Canadian National Team.
“I was and am very honored to be named to the 2013 Canadian national team. It's actually very difficult to describe exactly how it feels to be representing your country at a World Championship tournament but amazing, exciting and surreal come to mind.”
*All quotes obtained first hand unless otherwise indicated.