Support for boy netballer

Jayden Cowling
Jayden Cowling

BENDIGO teenager Jayden Cowling has been overwhelmed by the support he has received for his bid to play netball in the Bendigo Football Netball League.Jayden, 15, made an impassioned plea to the BFNL this week to allow him to play in the all-female competition.“I’ve received a lot of phone calls and messages from people saying I should be allowed to play,’’ Jayden said yesterday. “It’s been great to have so many people supporting me.”The front page story of Wednesday’s Bendigo Advertiser sparked a media frenzy, with Jayden’s campaign becoming national news.“I did an interview with the Herald-Sun yesterday and I did a television interview with Today Tonight earlier.“All I want to do now is get on the court and play.”Bendigo Advertiser readers have reacted favourably to Jayden’s quest.“Why doesn’t the Bendigo Thunder women’s footy team have a men’s netball team? Make it a complete gender role reversal,’’ wrote Leroy on the Bendigo Advertiser website.Nesy reponded with, “If a girl can get special permission to play AFL with the boys, why can’t he get permission to play netball? Sexist much? I thought in this day and age women wanted equality, but I suppose that they only want it on their terms. I’m female by the way and I think it’s disgusting the way women can discriminate and think it’s OK.”In a poll on the Bendigo Advertiser facebook page, 84 per cent of votes were in favour of Jayden being allowed to play netball in the BFNL.