On the Cook Islands
, football takes third place after rugby union and rugby league. But if the countless women players were taken into account, the number would far exceed those for the other two sports put together. Among the women islanders, football is the second most widely played team sport after netball. The number of young players (both girls and boys) has also soared in the past few years. In 1998 and 2002, the Cook Islands
national team qualified for the final round of the OFC Nations Cup. But so far, local players have not managed to break into foreign leagues. Joseph Chambers, however, a member of the national team for ten years (seven of which as captain) deserves a special mention.