Warriors Women duo Carys Phillips and Ffion Lewis have signed full-time contracts with the Welsh Rugby Union.
Phillips, 29, and Lewis, 25, along with ten other players have penned international terms and will be based at the National Centre of Excellence.
“We are really pleased for both Carys and Ffion,” said Warriors Women Director of Rugby Jo Yapp.
“To have the opportunity to train full-time is fantastic and no more than they deserve. Both players have been balancing full-time work with international and club rugby, which is really tough, so it is great that more players are getting this opportunity within the game.”
WRU Performance Director Nigel Walker said: “The historic awarding of 12 full-time contracts will enable all these players to be full-time professionals and have regular, weekly contact with Head Coach Ioan Cunningham, the rest of the coaches and our expert science and medical team.
“All of this will make a significant difference to the players’ preparation, fitness and skill sets in order to enable us to challenge the best teams in the world.
“We were so pleased with the quality of the players’ autumn performances that an increase to 12 full-time contracts was agreed, and the coaching team felt that working with 12 players who form the spine of the team would make a big impact. These players will be joined by 15 players on retainer contracts in the coming weeks.”
The first full-time players
Forwards: Alisha Butchers, Natalia John, Siwan Lillicrap, Carys Phillips, Gwenllian Pyrs, Donna Rose
Backs: Kiera Bevan, Hannah Jones, Jasmine Joyce, Ffion Lewis, Lisa Neumann, Elinor Snowsill