By JACK AMI
TWO new franchises from the Southern region have expressed their interest in joining for next year’s Digicel Cup competition.
They are the Central Dabari (Wallabies) and NCD Southern Blacks (Papuan Black snake) while a third franchise as yet unnamed is expected to make a bid.
The Dabari have not released details of their bid but will confirm it as soon as a naming rights sponsor is secured. The Southern Blacks are backed by Moresby South MP and Lands Minister Justin Tkatchenko as well as the corporate community in their electorate.
Moresby South executives Brown Murema and Bagelo Solien approached the PNGNRL office at the Sir John Guise Stadium, Waigani, to get more details of requirements to bid for the 2019 season.
“We’re fortunate that MP Tkatchenko is backing our bid and hopefully we can meet the criteria and get a team in next year,” Solien said.
“Our stadium will be completed in August and the official launch in September coinciding with the Independence Day celebrations.
“This is a requirement from PNGNRL for franchises to have their own secured stadium and have a player base and that we those things in place now.”
Solien said the league had already identified a large group of players from their league and were looking at their form over the course of the season with a final squad to be finalised in Spetember.
Solien said PNGNRLC general manager Stanley Hondina had told them that having a venue was a requirement as franchises like the Port Moresby Vipers, Hela Wigmen and Gulf Isou were using the same facility in the nation’s capital.
“We were advised by Stanley that K400,000 is the registration fee for a new franchise and we’ll have to secure the funds to confirm our participation.”
By JACK AMI