The National , Tuesday, May 31, 2011
NATIONAL Rugby League (NRL) boss David Gallop has agreed with the PNG NRL Bid’s new direction and future plans under the leadership of Brad Tassell, the Bid’s new chief executive officer.
Tassell cleared the air on a number of issues that have affected the Bid and rugby league in PNG over the past 12 months, particularly with the PNG Rugby Football League (PNGRFL).
Gallop was pleased to hear that the Bid and the PNGRFL had agreed to work hand in hand with other key stakeholders to ensure rugby league maintained its position as the national sport in PNG.
Tassell explained that the Bid was working closely with the PNGRFL to develop a national junior development programme to ensure young Papua New Guineans had a clear pathway for a future in rugby league.
He advised Gallop that he was visiting various regions in the coming weeks to outline plans and consult with regional representatives to ensure a strong and successful junior programme was implemented.
“It is a key part of our criteria to have a strong junior development structure and David (Gallop) has agreed with the Bid and PNGRFL working together to deliver this programme.
“I am determined through consultation with the grass roots administrators of rugby league and working with the PNGRFL that we can formulate and deliver a very successful junior development programme.”
While the NRL have not formally announced a decision to expand the competition at this stage, Tassell informed Gallop that PNG was working extremely hard to place itself at the top of the ladder to be considered for a licence in the coming years.
Gallop was also impressed that the Bid and PNGRFL were working together to ensure PNG participated in international competitions in the near future saying, “if work can be done to prepare for inclusion in a competition like the Queensland Cup that will be a stepping stone on the way”.
Tassell was assured that there are a number of corporate sponsors who are ready and willing to support PNG competing at the international level and that the nation can demonstrate to the NRL that we have a strong administrative and financial structure in place.
“This will be a huge announcement for us but we also recognise that a due diligence process has to occur to ensure the site, planning, building and construction of the stadium is in the right location and of world standard.”