New South Wales Deputy Premier John Barilaro
New South Wales Waratahs Coming To Tamworth In 2020
Victor P Taffa
Rugby fans worldwide will turn their attention to Tamworth next year when the New South Wales Waratahs bring the Super Rugby competition to regional New South Wales in a show of support for drought-stricken communities.
Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional New South Wales John Barilaro today announced the Waratahs will host a home match at Scully Park in Tamworth during the 2020 season, which kicks off in February.
“Regional New South Wales will have an opportunity to host an elite level rugby match and cheer on our State with the Tahs coming to Tamworth next year.” Deputy Premier Barilaro said.
“Televised match will showcase regional New South Wales before an international audience but more importantly boost the local economy when the players, support staff and fans come to town.”
“It goes to show the resilience of regional New South Wales, when despite this devastating drought Tamworth will stage a world class event and generate tourism opportunities for our regions far and wide.”
“Sport is often the heartbeat of regional New South Wales towns and the Waratah’s visit to Tamworth will provide locals with the opportunity to meet the players and for kids to be a part of skills sessions that will improve their abilities and hopefully give them a much-needed boost.” Deputy Premier Barilaro said.
Acting Minister for Sport Geoff Lee said this was a great opportunity for Tamworth locals to see their sporting heroes up close.
“Super Rugby competition will share the benefits of sport across the State.” Acting Minister Lee said.
“This partnership between the New South Wales Government and New South Wales Rugby Union will bring together grass roots rugby and elite level rugby for fans of all ages.”
Member for Tamworth Kevin Anderson said the match will uplift a community that is, like all of regional New South Wales, struggling through one of the worst droughts on record.
“New South Wales Government is providing $1.8 Billion in emergency drought relief funding as well as making record investments in water security infrastructure, but we’re also acutely aware of the impact this drought is having on people.” Mr. Anderson said.
“Bringing this event to Tamworth will provide the town and surrounding areas with some respite from the unrelenting drought and boost the number of customers in our cafes, diners in restaurants and heads on beds in our motels.”
NSWRU Acting CEO, Philip Van Schalkwyk said this exciting announcement is an extension of rugby’s efforts to support regional areas.
“Country New South Wales is such an important part of our rugby community, they make up a significant portion of our participation base and are huge supporters of our game at all levels.” Mr. Van Schalkwyk said.
“Taking a Super Rugby game to Tamworth, particularly when most regional areas in New South Wales are doing it tough is something, we’re proud to do and really epitomises the spirit of our game.”
“I’d also like to acknowledge the work of the New South Wales Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional New South Wales, John Barilaro and his ministerial team who have been an integral part of making this fixture in Tamworth a reality.” Mr. Van Schalkwyk said.
“Rod Laing [CEO, Wests Entertainment Group] and his team have been tremendous to work with so far, we already feel welcome and can’t wait to get up to Tamworth next year.”
New South Wales Waratahs will play the Pretoria Bulls at Scully Park in Tamworth in round 8 of the 2020 season.