New South Wales Rugby League Chief Executive, David Trodden, and National Rugby League Head of Football, Todd Greenberg, will join almost 4000 children from some 200 schools in the game’s heartland of western Sydney next week for the 70th NSWRL All Schools Carnival.
The NSWRL All Schools Carnival, Australia’s biggest junior rugby league carnival, brings together the school junior league community from right across the state for three days of competition starting Monday 28 July to Wednesday 30 July.
Teams will converge on western Sydney from all points of the state, and the players will be accompanied by well over 200 volunteers, referees, first aid officers and ground managers.
The event’s enormous scale will see the NSWRL make use of five separate western Sydney playing fields, with St Mary’s eight-field Whalan Reserve being the main hub of activity.
Easily the biggest day of the carnival, Monday will see 100 primary schools and more than 1500 children represent their districts from all over NSW including the North Coast, Mid North Coast, Newcastle, Central Coast, North West, Sydney Metro, Western Division, Illawarra and the South Coast regions.
On Tuesday nearly 70 secondary schools will take to the fields with more than 1200 children expected to take part, before Wednesday which features the elite secondary schools which are home to a number of the states future stars.
Also on the Wednesday, we will see the running of an all-girls competition with 12 sides entered including teams from Newcastle, Illawarra and the ACT.
NSWRL Chief Executive, David Trodden said the NSWRL All Schools Carnival is a wonderful tournament that serves as a significant stepping stone in the development of tomorrow’s stars.
“There are literally thousands of kids getting ready to take part in the All Schools Carnival and it’s fitting we are able to host it in a region which is at the forefront of our strong growth at the junior level,” Mr Trodden said.
“Schools from up north near the Tweed like Kingscliff and Terranora will be joined by some 200 schools from the ACT, south coast and everywhere in between.
“Just bringing in the large amount of volunteers we have is a monumental task in itself and their commitment and passion for the grass roots side of our sport is one of the reasons we are able to stage such a wonderful event.
“I’m very much looking forward to venturing out to western Sydney next week and witnessing first-hand the talent that is coming through the ranks at the junior level.
“The game is going through an exciting phase in New South Wales at the moment, but our future begins with these kids and that really excites me.”
NRL Head of Football, Todd Greenberg, echoed Mr Trodden’s thoughts when it comes to the importance of this time honoured event.
“The annual All Schools Carnival is the perfect way to highlight the passion that New South Wales has for rugby league,” NRL Head of Football Mr Todd Greenberg said.
“We have seen so many great champions come through this competition and it helps showcase the game and the talent we have playing at the junior rugby league level.”
Joining Mr Trodden and Mr Greenberg at the finals on Monday will be Robert Culkin, rugby league’s oldest living grade referee.
Mr Culkin, 98, was one of the originally appointed referees to the first All Schools 70 years ago. An ambassador of the NSWRL Referees Association, he was graded in 1944 after failing to secure a playing contract with Souths.
A summary of daily results will be made available each evening on the NSWRL website and links to the draws for all three days can be found below.