Michaela Leonard knows better than most about the rapid rise of women's rugby, which is why it was fitting she was the face of the Super W launch on Wednesday.
Less than two years ago the ACT Brumbies skipper was oblivious to rugby union and the prospect of becoming a Wallaroo.
Now she's leading the Brumbies charge to be Super W contenders and the team hopes guidance from a wrestling coach and a forwards guru can boost their hopes this season.
Leonard rubbed shoulders with players from the NSW Waratahs, the Melbourne Rebels, Rugby WA and Queensland at the competition's launch at the National Museum.
It continues her rise through the ranks after making her Wallaroos debut just 18 months after being convinced to trial for the Brumbies squad.
"It's great women's rugby is growing and getting recognition, it's exciting and I can't wait to see [what happens] over the next few years," Leonard said.
"The skill level is growing, there are more girls turning up to trials and we have some girls travelling down from the [Northern Territory] to play with us this year. The word is out there now, girls are getting excited.
"The last 12 months [personally] has been an absolute whirlwind. Being relatively new to the game to being called up to wear the green and gold jersey was an amazing feeling.
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"The learning opportunities as well ... I can't wait to bring that back and show that through this Super W season."
Brumbies mentor Laurie Fisher and wrestling coach Steve Babic have been helping the women prepare for the third edition of Super W.
The Brumbies made the finals for the first time last year, but were knocked out of title contention by Queensland. They've added 17 new faces to the squad this year in a bid to end the Queensland and NSW stranglehold on grand final spots.
But the competition is still playing catch up in many respects. Players are not paid and teams only play four games each.
Rugby Australia invests money into its women's sevens program, with players earning a full-time wage to compete on the international circuit and Olympic Games qualification.
The 15-a-side game is trying to follow that path, and Wallaroos representatives will earn Test-match pay for the first time this year.
"The first year was explorative for everybody. Now we're three seasons into that ... there's new talent coming through and that's because of the participation growth," said Rugby Australia boss Raelene Castle.
"We have equal pay parity in the women's sevens. For me, and the women's 15s game, we have to make sure the first thing we can do is the highest level of coaching, enough support around athletic performance and allow them to balance the requirements of being professional athletes and still working.
"Over time that will grow towards paying players to play Super W. We have to make sure we crawl, then walk, then jog and then sprint."
Super W matches this season will be a mix of standalone fixtures and double-headers with Super Rugby. The Brumbies women will start their season on Saturday afternoon before the Brumbies men play the Otago Highlanders at Canberra Stadium.
Leonard said: "Hopefully [we get to a home-and-away season], it would be a great opportunity to play more games, develop skills and have a bigger season leading into representative honours."
SUPER W ROUND ONE
Saturday: ACT Brumbies v Rugby WA at Canberra Stadium, 4.35pm