RIVERINA MP Michael McCormack has began the campaign for Wagga to be used as a regional training base for the Women's 2023 World Cup in Australia.
Australia and New Zealand's bid to host the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup was successful, with the announcement coming in the early hours of Friday morning.
McCormack wasted no time in campaigning for Wagga to be used as a regional training hub for the event, and was straight on the phone on Friday morning.
"There's no reason why with facilities such as we have here at Rawlings Park, Wagga Wagga, there's no reason why Wagga Wagga indeed can't be a coaching and training camp for that Women's World Cup," McCormack said.
"I've spoken with the sports minister Richard Colbeck about that very thing just this morning, about getting regional areas, as part of the action for that very exciting announcement very early this morning."
McCormack said Wagga would be the perfect location for a regional training base.
"There's no reason why we couldn't have one of those teams from overseas come here to Wagga Wagga and set up base as a training camp," he said.
"And of course...then they could do school clinics and camps and all those sort of things whilst they're here, training for the World Cup. It could create so many opportunities for this city.
"It's already a multicultural city, it's already a cradle of multiculturalism, why shouldn't Wagga, now it's got these great new facilities, why shouldn't Wagga be able to participate in this way?"
Football Wagga was quick to join the push for the city and says it would do what it can to support a visiting nation.
"We would love to, we would love to welcome them to our city," Football Wagga's strategy and planning officer, Tim Barter, said.
"I think we have a fantastic city, we've got beautiful grounds here at the moment, we would love to get a few more facilities here to assist with that if we do get the chance. I'm sure Wagga City Council could help us along those lines but we would love to.
"We've got a great city, we've got a huge amount of people that would help if we did get some teams here to train for the Cup. This is the hub of this whole region so absolutely why not come down here."
The push came on the same day as Football Wagga and McCormack officially unveiled the new lighting at Rawlings Park.
The lighting of fields two, three and four was courtesy of a $450,00 Federal Government grant through the Community Sport Infrastructure Program.
"All fields at Rawlings Park are now available for multiple clubs to utilise at the same time since the completion of this long-awaited project, and it is a wonderful sight to see our sport back in action after an uncertain and unprecedented time," Barter said.
The upgraded lighting is stage one of Football Wagga's Rawlings Park development that it hopes can lead the sport into the future.