Perth / Boorloo, the capital of the state of Western Australia and one of the five host cities of the FIFA Women’s World Cup™ in the country, was the last port of call for FIFA representatives visiting tournament facilities. The first stop on the itinerary saw the delegation which included FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura, Dave Beeche, CEO of the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 Australia and New Zealand, and Jane Fernandez, Chief Operating Officer (COO) for FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 in Australia, travel to Perth Rectangular Stadium. Traditional Owner of Whadjuk Country, Kerry-Ann Winmar performed a ceremony to welcome them to the area. She then explained the six seasons of the indigenous culture: Birak (December - January), Bunuru (February - March), Djeran (April - May), Makuru (June - July), Djilba (August - September) and Kambarang (October - November) to the group before highlighting the rich stories and legends of her people around seasonal flora and fauna and how these traditional tales, passed on through the generations, help preserve nature and wildlife.
David Etherton, CEO, Venues Western Australia and Shane Harris, Venue Manager Perth Rectangular Stadium then proceeded to provide the group with a tour of the venue, which will host five Group Stage matches of the FIFA Women’s World Cup. A redevelopment of facilities for the FIFA Women’s World Cup, for players, officials and to provide legacy outcomes for the venue after the tournament, is underway. Redevelopment works include the construction of a centre player tunnel and upgrades to changeroom facilities. The LED screens will be expanded and replaced, with the playing surface to be removed, levelled and turf replaced to ensure an optimum playing surface for the tournament and beyond. From a sustainability perspective, new LED sports lighting will be installed to replace existing Halogen lights and photovoltaic (PV) cells introduced to mitigate some power consumption on site.
FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura in Perth
Shane Harris, General Manager at Perth Rectangular Stadium, FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura and Dave Beeche, Chief Executive Officer of the FIFA Women's World Cup Australia & New Zealand 2023
Hon David Templeman, Minister for Culture and the Arts, Sport and Recreation, International Education, and Heritage talks with FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura and Dave Beeche, CEO of the FIFA Women's World Cup Australia & New Zealand 2023
A meeting with Minister for Culture and the Arts; Sport and Recreation; International Education; Heritage, David Templeman followed. Talks focused on the refurbishment of Perth Rectangular Stadium, the abundance of cultural talent and offerings in Western Australia and the potential to highlight this, while simultaneously underlining the tournament ethos of taking women’s football Beyond Greatness through bespoke art, musical, sport and cultural events.
Minister Templeman stressed his belief in the FIFA Women’s World Cup acting as a catalyst for enhanced participation in football for girls and women. Speaking on this topic Fatma Samoura said: “The FIFA Women’s World Cup has the ability to harness the power of role models like the Matildas’ Sam Kerr and bring about changed perspectives and opinions in local communities about women’s football. We want a big roster of football legends coming from Western Australia and beyond, to work hand in hand with us to bring enthusiasm and excitement to the hearts and minds of everyone in Australia to make this tournament the best ever!”
The delegation next met with Chris Rawlinson, Senior Government Relations Manager Football Australia and Carolyn Turnbull, Managing Director, Tourism Western Australia. During discussions they were briefed on the tourism facilities in the area which will be available to visiting teams and fans including Rottnest Island home to the quokka, a beloved Australian mammal and member of the marsupial family. A meeting with Julie Bishop, Australia’s first-ever female Foreign Minister ended the FIFA representatives’ mission to Perth. Exchanges focused on the importance of youth and female empowerment through football.