Former Australian rugby league Test fullback Graham Eadie, who is keen to help promote the code.
Former Australian rugby league Test fullback Graham Eadie, who is keen to help promote the code.

Wombat? forages for new ideas

By BOB ANTHONY of the Tweed Daily News

GRAHAM EADIE has climbed to the pinnacle of rugby league and from those lofty heights he has gained a sharp perspective on what's important for the game.

Eadie, affectionately known as 'Wombat', is passionate about the code and its future, so he has organised a 'grass-roots' forum at Twin Towns Services Club next Thursday night.

He and fellow league supporter Mark Russell from Aussie Gateways are bringing together a panel of players, media commentators, business leaders and junior rugby league officials to examine ways of fostering community 'ownership' of the game, particularly at a junior level.

Eadie said there had been plenty said recently about the state of the game, especially in country and regional areas, and the open forum was one way of addressing how communities could assist the NRL in developing participation at all levels.

"The NRL has been taking the game to the regions and have employed development officers to help promote the code outside the metropolitan areas," Eadie said.

"But there's a feeling these officers need help and the forum next week will look at ideas on how sports clubs and businesses can support those officers."

Eadie said joining him on the forum panel would be Graeme Hughes from radio show Talkin' Sport, NBN sports journalist Mike Rabbitt, Titans junior development officer Gavin Judd, Group 18 junior rugby league representative Mark Harrison, former Test halfback Tom Raudonikus and league representatives from both sides of the border.

Eadie will also launch the inaugural Border Cup Challenge, aimed at bringing together legends of the game with up-and- coming youngsters to raise money for junior sport and worthy community causes.

The concept will kick off on the June long weekend at the Mullumbimby Giants ground.

"This will be a fun event with the focus on rugby league," Eadie said.

Eadie said the Grassroots of Rugby League forum next Thursday was open to all.

Inquiries to Mark Russell on 6680 1424.



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