Restructure for SP Hunters


Greetings to all our rugby league family and welcome to our 17th edition of Fulltime Reserve, a weekly column to discuss all matters rugby league in our favourite newspaper The National.
Last week, we highlighted the work that is being undertaken to strengthen and improve the governance and management of the game at the confederate, provincial and league levels.
The Papua New Guinea Rugby Football League (PNGRFL) team spent a successful weekend in Kavieng last week to work with all our rugby league stakeholders in New Ireland, including the provincial government, to pilot the reforms and in particular to establish the provincial rugby league board.
When finalised, this will become the model to be adopted and delivered in all the other provinces across the country.
This week, we look at the work that is being undertaken to restructure the SP Hunters programme. The club was established by PNGRFL to be a PNG-based elite professional football club in the second-tier Queensland Intrust Super Cup competition.
The club is owned and managed by PNGRFL and performs a dual role as both a professional football team and as an elite high-performance pathway programme for PNG rugby league.
Last November, PNGRFL — in partnership with the Queensland Rugby League and our local stakeholders — undertook a comprehensive review of the Hunters operations over the last seven years.
The recommendations of the review were put to the PNGRFL board early this year and it approved for the restructure of the club from being a programme under the PNGRFL to a more independent franchise.
The recommendations were focused on making the club operate as an independent entity from PNGRFL with a separate board and management structure to ensure it achieved financial and operational efficiency to guarantee long-term commercial success and sustainability.
The key component of the structure was finding the operational balance between commercial success for the Hunters whilst also ensuring that the club continued to be an integral part of PNGRFL’s six tier rugby league competition structure and pathway programme so that it continued to perform its objective as the elite high performance pathway for the domestic game.
Over the last few months, PNGRFL has been finalising this new structure for the Hunters by the end of August in preparation for next season.
The board will, in August, approve the new structure of the Hunters and appoint a new board and management that will take charge of the franchise. Join us on our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages to follow this and more rugby league stories.
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Until next week, may the grace, love and care of our Good Lord be with you.



  • Can the PNGNRL/RFL update its website daily about its activities? Also, why not create website for our beloved Digicel Cup where you’ll have all the participating teams updates. I believe its a way forward to develop the competition and easy to keep track of the players coming through its system. it’ll also demonstration and show our rugby league in the country is structured and organised.

  • Mr. Tsaka what is wrong with PNG player breaking into NRL markets, the current and former hunters are demotivated to continue playing because it’s not rewarding. I know by now we should have more than 10 PNG boys playing in the NRL, most of our boys are far more better than some NRL players. My understanding is that racism is keeping PNG boys out of NRL. Please it needs high level advocacy

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