To many people in the Canberra rugby community, Louise Burrows has been around forever. This is probably a fair statement given she is at least twice the age of some of her teammates.
Some weren’t even born when she started playing rugby union in 1995.
At 43 years of age, Louise is more determined than ever to succeed on the rugby field, a place where she has already achieved plenty, including playing in four Women’s Rugby World Cups.
The hooker/prop last played for the Australian women’s rugby union team, the Wallaroos, at the 2017 Women’s Rugby World Cup, but hasn’t played for her country since being told she was too old in 2018.
If anything, it has provided motivation to make the Australian team for next year’s delayed World Cup in New Zealand.
Louise will be 44 years old by the time the 2022 Women’s Rugby World Cup comes around, but she is prepared physically and mentally, and her years spent on earth have only added to her resolve.
“Age doesn’t matter, especially in the front row,” she says. “Just because I’m a certain age doesn’t mean I’m too old to play.
“I feel like a motherly figure at times, but I don’t feel as though there is a big age gap. I’m still going and loving it.”
It is almost as though the mere thought of another pre-season, which is just around the corner, brings out Louise’s competitive spirit.
“I’m really looking forward to getting back into it,” says Louise as she looks ahead to the 2022 Super W series with the Brumbies, and hopefully a fifth World Cup appearance.
She is experienced enough to know what she is capable of, having been a scholarship coach in strength and conditioning at the AIS through two Olympic cycles.
Louise has used this experience to put her own home gym together, and she is now stronger than ever.
Beyond rugby, Louise is a highly respected physical education teacher at Canberra Girls Grammar. Her husband, Mick, is an electrician and they have two children, Fletcher, 14, and Georgie, 12. It’s a full life.
“I’d love to win a national championship before I retire,” she says.
Louise is certainly determined to achieve this goal, and with her maturity and experience, it’s hard to go past her for selection in any rugby front row.