World Cup trophy visits PNG league’s birthplace, Wau


THE community of Wau in Bulolo district of Morobe welcomed the Rugby League World Cup (RLWC) trophy on Tuesday.
Wau is the birth place of rugby league in Papua New Guinea, with the sport having first been played in 1930s and the pilgrimage of the Paul Barriere Trophy was significant.
Oil Search, the tour’s sponsor along with the support of PNG Forest Products and Harmony Gold, ensured that the people in Wau shared in the celebration of the sport’s tournament which will see Port Moresby host three matches in October and November.
The trophy was received at the Bulolo airstrip by the district development authority chief executive officer Tae Guambalek on behalf of local MP Sam Basil.
The trophy was put on a motorcade around Bulolo town before arriving at PNG Forest Product’s main office and was received by the purchasing and logistic manager Kevin Fauth.
From Bulolo the trophy was airlifted to the Hidden Valley mine for the employees of Harmony Gold to see.
After the Hidden Valley stop the trophy was taken into Wau where Wau primary school children and the community excitedly welcome it.
Oil Search general manager for stakeholders’ engagement Leon Buskens told the people that the trophy was making a pilgrimage to Wau the place that it was first played in PNG.
Buskens said it was a significant event for the trophy to be launched in Wau on its nationwide tour.
He said most people could not go and watch the World Cup games in Port Moresby so with that in mind Oil Search with its partners was bringing the trophy to the people.
The Paul Barriere trophy after the Morobe tour will be taken up to the Eastern Highlands and then to Southern Highlands. From the Highlands leg of tour the trophy will be airlifted to the New Guinea Islands (East New Britain and New Ireland) before returning to Port Moresby.

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