Raecene McGregor backs calls for major change to Dally M medal

Raecene McGregor, pictured here with the women's Dally M medal.
Raecene McGregor has backed calls to change the name of the women's Dally M medal. Image: Getty

Raecene McGregor has expressed her support for calls to change the name of the Dally M medal for the women's champion.

McGregor was rewarded for her stunning season with the Sydney Roosters in the NRLW after winning the women's Dally M medal on Wednesday night.

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McGregor beat out Tamika Upton and Tarryn Aiken to claim the gong, while Cronulla halfback Nicho Hynes won the man's Dally M medal.

However there have been calls to change the name of the women's medal in recent years to better honour a pioneer of the female game.

The Dally M medal is named after Herbert Henry 'Dally' Messenger - one of Australia's first professional footballers and widely regarded as one of the greatest players in rugby league history.

And while his name has rightly adorned the Dally M medal for the men's winner since 1979, there have been calls recently to change the name of the women's medal.

"It'd be awesome if it would be," McGregor said on Wednesday night when asked if the medal should honour a women's pioneer instead.

"There's so many women that have paved the way for us to be where we are today."

The ARL Commission is reportedly considering changing the women's award to honour Maggie Moloney, who many consider the 'female Dally Messenger' and starred in the first public women's rugby league game in 1921.

But according to McGregor, someone like Broncos star Ali Brigginshaw should get the honour.

"She's always somebody that I really looked up to as a player and I've been really lucky to play with her. She's just taught me so many things moving forward in my career," McGregor said.

"I wouldn't say that her name wouldn't be tossed up for one of these awards later on."

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The 24-year-old also implored the NRL to move towards implementing full-time contracts for female players.

"I'm really hoping we're full-time by the next five years," she said.

"We're heading in the right direction. There's so many girls that work full-time. I'm one of them. It's really hard to go from work to training."

Reacting to her remarkable triumph after joining the Roosters last season following a serious shoulder injury, McGregor said: "It's definitely a massive shock to me.

Nicho Hynes and Raecene McGregor, pictured here with their Dally M medals.
Nicho Hynes and Raecene McGregor pose for a photo with their Dally M medals. (Photo by Jason McCawley/Getty Images)

"Like I said before, there's so many girls out there that deserve this award.

"I'm really, really grateful to receive it.

"It 's really amazing to see from where the game started to where it is now. So many young girls out there look up to us as players. It's awesome.

"It was really hard to no t have a club there. To play for the last three years and have such a big injury ... it was really tough."

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