The SG Ball Cup is an 17-team under-18s competition conducted by the NSW Rugby League.
2017 Competing Sides
Central Coast Roosters
Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles
North Sydney Bears
South Sydney Rabbitohs
St George Dragons
West Coast Pirates
Western Suburbs Magpies
Western Sydney Academy of Sport
The competition includes both junior representative teams of NRL and Intrust Super Premiership NSW clubs that do not field a team in the NRL competition.
In 2009 the Melbourne Storm, was admitted to the competition; and in 2010 the competition continued its national growth with the introduction of the WA Reds / West Coast Pirates from Perth.
The SG Ball Cup is named after SG "George" Ball, one of the five people responsible for the formation of the South Sydney Rabbitohs, and who was club secretary for more than 50 years.
Parramatta has been the most successful club in the 52-year history of the competition, winning the premiership 11 times, ahead of South Sydney (10) and Penrith (7).
In 2016, Penrith won their first title in 10 years and also claimed the national under-18 crown.
Newcastle earned the minor premiership, narrowly beating an Illawarra side that hasn’t won any silverware since dual titles in 1996, but they fell to Penrith in the preliminary finals.
However, the Panthers faced the mental battle of a Grand Final against the Steelers - the side responsible for both their losses throughout the season.
The Steelers lost several key players to injury in the decider and the Panthers made the most of their advantage, winning 25-10 to be crowned SG Ball champions in front of a vocal home crowd.
The Panthers faced up to the Blackhawks in the Under-18 National Junior Final - a team that had been runners-up for the two years previously. It was a high-scoring affair in hot, dry Brisbane conditions, but Penrith were always ahead of Townsville and eventually secured the national title.
The Panthers won 38-28 and dummy- half Treymaine Brown was judged best on ground, capping off another exciting junior representative season that saw significant young talent prepared for the senior grades.