- Journalist and author Steve Mascord ‘struggles’ with name
- He has a problem with the team’s nickname that includes ‘boys’
- His opinion garnered support and opposition from football fans.
Respected rugby league journalist Steve Mascord has divided football fans by revealing he “struggles” with the fact that North Queensland’s NRLW team is called the Cowboys because the word is unmistakably masculine.
The former Sydney Morning Herald football reporter and author of league books Touchstones and Two Tribes had his say on X on Tuesday when responding to a report that the team had appointed a new head coach.
“I find it hard that the women’s team is called the Cowboys,” Mascord wrote.
‘I know they want to use the same brand but… when does the nickname include ‘guys’?’
North Queensland’s NRLW team is also called the Cowboys, leaving one football pundit scratching his head over the unmistakably masculine nickname (pictured Shellie Long plays for the club in August last year).
Footy journalist and author Steve Mascord (pictured) said he has problems with the team’s name because it includes the word “boys”.
His interpretation of the team’s name sparked mixed reactions from football fans, with one responding: “You know the male players aren’t cowboys either, right?”
Another wrote: ‘Steve, see your point… The women spoke up and wanted to be the same club as the NRL. They wanted fans to support them as well as the NRL team and felt they wouldn’t get it with a different name. NRL agreed with them. Sometimes we men think too much about women’s sport.’
That comment prompted the following response from Mascord: “It seems like a couple of clubs asked for different nicknames.”
A third commenter added: “Don’t fight it mate… it’s just a name.” Nobody has died. Virtue signaling points cannot be accumulated on this occasion.’
Other responses from fans included: “Should Newcastle [Knights] So the team will be called Dames?’, ‘It’s really no big deal’, ‘Surely it needs to be a more appropriate equivalent’ and ‘I couldn’t agree more’. He would also say that the NRLW bantam team also needs a name change.”
North Queensland first fielded a women’s team in 2020, when they were named Gold Stars, but the name change to ‘Cowboys’ was made when they joined the NRLW last year (pictured)
One commenter suggested the NRLW side could be called ‘cow people’, ‘cow people’ or ‘cowboys’, while another wrote: ‘You could also say the same about the roosters, the knights and the raiders. The Titans also have a distinctly masculine emblem.’
North Queensland won the right to field an NRLW team in 2022 and the team made its debut in the competition in 2023, finishing second from bottom with two wins from nine games.
The club’s women’s team was named Gold Stars when it first played in the Queensland Rugby League Women’s Premiership in 2020, before entering the NRLW.
The Gold Stars logo did not feature the pair of bull horns shown on the men’s side emblem, instead showing a large white star in the club’s blue and gray colours.
The symbol was accompanied by three smaller yellow stars symbolizing the three feeder clubs (Northern Pride, Townsville Blackhawks and Mackay Cutters) that provided the team’s players.