Katie Sands


Coverage of women's sports and women working in sport have for far too long been an afterthought at best, or a non-consideration at worst, in the British media, but I am very proud to say my passion for covering incredible stories about remarkable women in the sporting world has led to women's sport becoming a notable focus for WalesOnline in recent years.

I have led the drive to tell stories of the women themselves in a bid to appeal to a wider audience who are not necessarily already interested in their sport, readers who have since stayed with us as we built our credibility and now consume women's sport-specific content about what actually goes on on the pitch. We have seen stories about women's sport have gone from being read online hundreds of times each to tens of thousands. Former Wales international Gwennan Harries' football career might have been prolonged if she had played in a different time. Her own concerns about her own body were not taken seriously, eventually - in her view - playing a major part in her premature retirement from football on medical grounds, the repercussions of which are still being felt today. Now, she is blazing a trail off the field, as she tells us. While telling human interest stories is in an important strategy to grow women's sports, analysis of what goes on on the field can be far too scarce: part of the reason behind this tactical analysis piece exploring what makes Wales' midfield trio one of the best in the world. Finally, it took a dismal Six Nations campaign for Wales' national women's rugby team to force the start of their professional era this year. But before that, they were staring into an abyss, unsure if their union was going to dig deep and start financially supporting them. This explainer takes a forensic look at a complex issue which was not in the mainstream sporting conscience at the time, and made it accessible, aiding the public call for change.