THE third feature in our series introducing Guardian readers to members of the Warrington Wolves Women squad...

MOLLIE Parker has a long history with rugby league.

But not as a player.

Getting bashed and smashed, and giving it all back to rivals, is new this year to the 17-year-old former Bridgewater High School pupil.

“I’ve always loved rugby league, going to the Warrington games since I was really small and I’ve had a season ticket for ages,” said Mollie, whose family all follow the sport.

“When I saw on Facebook that Wolves were doing trials I just had to go for it.

“I thought it was going to be an amazing opportunity and I’ve loved it.”

Mollie, a student at Sir John Deane’s Sixth Form College in Northwich, is one of 16 players in the newly formed Wolves squad to have transferred to rugby league from another sport.

“I’ve always been really sporty, doing a number of different sports, but I’d always specialised in netball,” she said.

“I’d played netball for the past 10 years or so and I’ve been really into it.”

She does not regret the switch, revelling in her new team environment.

“It was the game in general which attracted me to want to play it,” she said.

“I find it elating when I play it.

“And our team has bonded really well.

“Hardly any of us knew each other coming into this through the trials that took place in December.”

Mollie has been able to call on skills honed on the netball court for her new-found love but she has had a lot to learn as well.

Her hand-eye coordination in delivering an accurate pass, together with her pace and full-on approach, made her an ideal candidate for the hooking role.

She got the nod at dummy-half for Wolves’ debut game in the Championship at Barrow Island last month and featured off the bench in the maiden home match against Widnes Vikings a week later.

“We’ve had lots of support from various coaches and conditioners. It’s all been going really well,” she said.

“The coaches have been helping with different skills, especially with tackling technique and passing the ball.

“In netball, you’re used to doing chest passes and shoulder passes whereas now it’s a whole new technique.

“Getting the technique was a bit hard but once you do get it, you’re fine, you’ve got the accuracy and the confidence you need.

“I’ve always been quite quick, so I was playing centre in netball and I’ve homed in to playing hooker now and moving quick from dummy-half which is suiting me really well.

“Tackling is certainly a whole new thing.

“Getting used to tackling at the beginning was a bit hard but it’s not as foreign now, I’m easing into it.”

The contact aspect of rugby league is something Mollie has quickly got used to.

“I’ve never been one of those people that just turns up and does things half-hearted, I’ve always wanted to go full-out at whatever I do and this sport is perfect for that,” she said.

“It does take a little while to get used to all the knocks and the bruises.

“The first few weeks I did have a few bruises and scratches, but you get used to it.

“It does hurt the next morning if you have a really bad bruise but it comes with the territory.”

Her selection in the squad has brought the team an instant fan club too.

“My family and friends were all really supportive about me starting playing rugby league,” she said.

“My entire family loves rugby league. They all have season tickets, and they’ve been to our games which has been really nice to see.”

Being a Wire fan, she has followed the career of Ben Westwood with keen interest and now she is being coached by him.

Super Bennie is assistant to head coach Lee Westwood, who has a long history coaching and playing in the professional and amateur game.

“Ben’s got so much knowledge from playing the game for so long with Warrington and England, it’s just really good to have him with us,” she said.

“It’s the little things that you don’t really think about before going into massive plays that he points out.

“When he needs to be serious he’s serious, when you can have a laugh he has a laugh with us.

“Lee, Ben and the other coaches are all working well together to produce a side that has come on in leaps and bounds especially since playing our first friendly.”