Falcons add lustre to local league competition
Mar
6
2015
RUGBY LEAGUE: Fourteen players contracted to the Sunshine Coast Falcons will run out in tomorrow's Sunshine Coast Gympie Rugby League Nines competition, in a huge boost to the tournament.

The announcement comes in the wake of the renewed relationship between the Intrust Super Cup club and the local league and is a sign of what can be expected in the 2015 season.

The tournament had loomed as a litmus test of how the Falcons would strengthen the local league - and they did not disappoint.

Although SCGRL chief James Ward did not divulge the official list of where Falcons players would play if not selected for the Intrust Super Cup side, he did confirm some of the Falcons' big guns would play this weekend.

Heading the list of Intrust Super Cup players to play in the nines are Sam Young, Brett Doherty and former Melbourne Storm under-20 player Billy Kitt, who have been allocated to the Northern Outlaws.

Kawana has been granted Mitch Ebdon and Matt Gilliman, both former Dolphins juniors, and Jye Ballinger will run out for his junior club, Maroochydore.

Brett Doherty and Ricky Shackston will represent Caloundra and Sam Sotogi is to play for Caboolture.

The Crushers will be boosted by the inclusion of Joe Meninga, Christian Wanka and Jay Lobwein.

"The key for the nines this weekend will be that so many Falcons will be playing for division clubs," Ward said.

"A swag of Falcons colts will also be playing in the top grade, with 15 named."

Ward said while the quality of club football would be raised significantly, he was most pleased about the number of former Sunshine Coast juniors returning to their old clubs.

"Twenty of the 29 players from the Falcons playing this weekend hail from local club land, which is sensational," he said.

"The systems in place are working and the Storm connection adds more credence to the pathway for our players to continue to a higher level of football.

"On average, local clubs can expect between two and four Falcons players to be playing for their club on a regular basis."

Maroochydore coach Mark Brandon backed the concept ahead of his side's round one clash against the Northern Outlaws.

"Caloundra won the nines comp last year and went on to win the premiership, which says a lot," he said.

SCGRL NINES

19 teams across four divisions

Competition starts at 10.25am tomorrow at the Maroochydore Rugby League Club

Finals are scheduled from 4.50pm

http://www.sunshinecoastdaily.com.au/news/falcons-add-lustre-to-local-competition/2565593/

Courtesy of Sunshine Coast Daily

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