The success of the 2013 X-Blades National Youth Championships on the Sunshine Coast this week has highlighted the importance of the new partnership between Rugby League and Touch Football Australia.
Rubgy League legend Petero Civoniceva, NRL General Manager General Manager League Integration & Game Development, Mr Andrew Hill, Touch Football Australia Chief Executive, Mr Colm Maguire, and World Cup-winning Jillaroo and NSW Touch Football Champion Emma Tonegato will come together today at the Championships.
The event, held at Stockland Park on the Sunshine Coast, will see 36 teams, including four from New Zealand, competing in the 18s Boys and Girls divisions and will conclude on Saturday, 14 September.
As well as her World Cup success with the Jillaroos, Tonegato was part of the NSW Touch Football Women’s 20s 3-0 victory over Queensland in the 2012 State of Origin Series.
“Players like Emma are the perfect example of the opportunities available for young players across both games,” Hill said.
“Emma is just one example. Several players at this championships play at the elite level of both sports, including NSW twins from Wagga Wagga Adam and Matthew Clune, who also play SG Ball with the Steelers, and Jeremy King, Benji Marshall’s younger brother.”
McGuire added: “The recent partnership established between the NRL and TFA will provide players at an elite level more options as well as extending opportunities for newcomers to the games all year round.
“Our aim is to create Australia’s largest sporting community and the hard work is well and truly underway.”
Civoniceva, who coached Tonegato in one of the Jillaroos’ final sessions before leaving for the UK earlier this year, will be at the Championships tomorrow to spend time with players and coaches.
McGuire, Hill, Civoniceva and Tonegato will be available to the media at 11:15am on Friday, 13 September, at the Chairman’s Lounge at Stockland Park Stadium.