20 Women Soccer Players Withdraw From League Over Transgender Players

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by Tyler Durden
Saturday, Apr 13, 2024 - 01:00 AM

Authored by Jim Birchall via The Epoch Times,

Concerns over the physical safety of female-born football (soccer) players competing against transgender athletes have compelled at least 20 players to quit, according to a source from within a Sydney-based league.

Calling itself the “biggest LGBTQIA+ women’s and non-binary football club in the world,” the Flying Bats FC has made international headlines for fielding 5 self-identifying transgender players, with at least nine transgender players in the wider NorthWest Association.

Critics have said the Bat’s domination of the four-week pre-season Beryl Ackroyd Cup, which followed an undefeated season in 2023 that produced scorelines disproportionate to other teams’ results, was a direct result of the inclusion of male-born transgender players.

According to the feminist and pro-woman online news source, Reduxx, president of St. Patrick’s Football Club Frank Parisi said a March discussion over the Flying Bats FC’s ease of victories had prompted an informal meeting with stakeholders of the Northwest Sydney Football Association to address “concerns around how implausible it has become for any team to win against the Flying Bats as well as physical safety concerns.”

Incensed by the Flying Bats’ domination, other clubs asked the league’s governing body Football NSW to force them into playing in a mixed-sex league.

One club official told the Daily Telegraph, “Our girls are here to play for fun and expect to play in the female competition. They did not sign up for a mixed competition. It was so disheartening for them to see the huge difference in ability—they’re killing it.”

The involvement of transgender athletes in sports is a current hot-button issue, as policymakers grapple with how to balance the effects on women’s players, versus the “rights” of female-identifying players born as biological men.

Advocates argue that transgender individuals should be able to participate in sports according to their gender identity, while opponents raise concerns about fairness and competitive advantage.

One of the key points of contention is the impact of testosterone levels on athletic performance.

Testosterone affects muscle mass, strength, and endurance, and transgender males who have undergone hormone therapy to transition may still have higher testosterone levels than cisgender females, providing a competitive advantage in women’s sports.

Pro-transgender inclusion campaigners argue for allowing individuals to compete according to their gender identity, regardless of hormone levels. They argue that excluding transgender athletes from women’s sports is discriminatory and goes against principles of inclusion and equality.

Teams Could be Punished for Forfeiting Matches

Despite the arguments for and against inclusion, anecdotal evidence has emerged of severe injuries being sustained by female players playing against the Flying Bats.

In audio of the Northwest Sydney Football Association meeting leaked to social media, Frank Parisi detailed an incident whereby a female player’s leg was broken during a game;

“A couple of year ago, one of the Flying Bats players broke one of our players’ legs in a game. It was a clumsy tackle from behind. Our player had her leg broken in two places and she’s no longer playing football. It was a direct result of a real bad, tall player… he didn’t get a red card.

“Accidents happen, but this could have been avoided,” Mr. Parisi said.

“One of our players rushed over to try to help her, she was screaming in so much pain. At that time, she made a derogatory remark to the Bats’ player, which we apologised for. [She was] suspended (for 8 weeks). The Bats player, nothing happened to [him].

Trans activist and former YouTuber Riley Dennis was also involved in football in NSW and came under criticism while playing for the Inter Lions FC in NSW Women’s Premier League 2 for injuring a female player who required hospital attention.

Mr. Parisi said at the meeting, 24 women had recently withdrawn from his club’s team.

“There’s a massive impact. I’m a very small club, we’ve only got seven teams ... and now I’ve lost both my women’s teams, and it was a direct result of members of the Flying Bats who were male playing in a female competition.”

Complicating affairs is a directive from Football NSW and Football Australia that allows players “to participate in football on the basis of the gender with which they identify.”

The clause is consistent with the Australian Human Rights Commission’s guidelines on transgender athlete participation.

Speaking with the Daily Mail, North West Sydney Football (NWSF) CEO Matthew Geracitano said he had heard a team that chooses not to play against the Flying Bats could potentially be censured for an “act of discrimination.”

“In response to a direct question from a member Club, NWSF reminded stakeholders that NWSF’s Grievance and Disciplinary Regulations apply sanctions for teams who forfeit games in any competition and that these regulations have been in place for many years.”

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