This guest blog is contributed by Cheryl Smith, on behalf of HAWFC.
If the superb goal scored by Clare Gemmell in the women’s game against Forfar on Sunday, was scored by one of Billy Reid's first division players it would have been re-played on Sportscene as a contender for goal of the season.
As it stands the women's game in Scotland doesn't receive this kind of support, the thought of settling down on a Sunday night to watch the weekend highlights of Hamilton Accies Women v Glasgow City may seem like an unrealistic pipe dream but it’s a dream none the less. The game has come a long way in the last few years with increased support from the football authorities and the media with the introduction of online publications and social network sites, the BBC has even hopped on board with a page on the sports section of their website dedicated to women's football. You can be forgiven for not knowing very much about HAWFC, like many of the other women’s clubs in Scotland, but this is beginning to change. The highest level of exposure the women's game in Scotland has had this year came about somewhat ironically when Daily Record Columnist Gordon Parks disregarded the game in Scotland as being unworthy of financial support, an opinion which he may or may not have changed after Hamilton Accies Women and Girls invited the man himself to take part in a training session with the club’s Premier League players.
Hamilton Accies Women and Girls FC play in the Scottish Women's Premier League, the highest level of women's football in the country and have done so since its inception. Home matches are played at the John Cumming Stadium in Carluke, a facility which has recently been refurbished. The club was established in 1992, set up by Ian Steele, William Brown and the Fleming Family who did so to provide a place for girls to play the game. HAWFC are very proud of the set up which has evolved into having six teams playing in the league, from U9's, U11's, U13's, U15's and U17's up to the Reserve and Premier team. The club has a professional coaching team which are SFA level 2 qualified and a squad of volunteers who give of their own time freely to ensure the progression of the club. The players are professional in every sense of the word, training four nights a week, working around full time jobs or studying. They play for the love of the game and the dedication and passion to play football throughout the club on every level is second to none.
HAWFC has grown rapidly in the 20 years since it was formed and it has a bright future ahead, but it is relying on the support of the local community to help the club evolve. Football fans of all ages are encouraged to come along and watch the women in action, whether you are a Hamilton fan or not, the talent on show is not to be missed. For those who are sceptical of women's football take a chance and come along, you might be surprised by what you see.