The Brumbies clash with their old foes the Waratahs on Thursday evening (7 February) will not only have a significant impact on the clubs’ momentum heading into the opening round of the Super Rugby season but will also leave a lasting impact on Goulburn locals.
Played at the home ground of the oldest country rugby union club in Australia, Goulburn Rugby Union Club, the match will give aspiring players an opportunity to see their rugby heroes up close.
With Wallaby internationals Rory Arnold, Tom Banks, Folau Fainga’a and Pete Samu and club captain Christian Lealiifano and crowd favourite Henry Speight set to run out on Goulburn Workers Arena, the president of the local rugby club said it was a huge boost for the rural town.
Peter Greaves hopes the pre-season clash will raise the profile of rugby union in the town.
“The club is really rapt that the Brumbies are bringing a pre-season game to Goulburn,” he shared. “It is going to be really good for us as a club because it will raise the profile of rugby in Goulburn.
“Goulburn is a rugby league town and rugby union has always been on the backburner so this gives us an opportunity to be high-profile and recruit some new players. This is the time of the year that we normally run a recruiting campaign to appeal for more players to try union so the timing is perfect.”
The club runs a junior competition for 150 juniors, with a strong under12s program in the town. Mr Greaves said the club is struggling for numbers in the teenage age categories but hopes the game will convince more kids to join the sport.
“As it is a pre-season trial it’s also a great chance to get up close and personal with players who will be able to engage with fans and sign autographs for kids,” he shared.
“We have the kids who do play rugby but we want to appeal to the kids who are on the sideline who haven’t chosen a sport yet. This game will really help us get some new blood into the club.”
The Goulburn Rugby Union Club will be cooking the barbecues and running the canteen and bar for the afternoon, while the Brumbies will host a free junior rugby clinic running in the afternoon to help develop the skills of the next generation of Brumbies stars.
Goulburn mayor Bob Kirk encouraged the community to get down to the ground to watch high-quality rugby up close.
“It will be a wonderful summer night in early February and a great atmosphere at the Workers Arena,” Mayor Kirk said. “There is nothing better than seeing professional sport played up close in a ‘park footy’ ground – you can hear every tackle and collision as well as see all the skills on display only metres away.”
Brumbies vs Waratahs
Thursday 7 February 2019
Goulburn Workers Arena, Kick-Off: 6:30 pm
Admission: $10 with u18 entry free
FREE for Plus500 Brumbies & Waratahs Members on production of Membership Card