More than two dozen teams from across South East Queensland will converge on Nambour next month (October), competing in the Sunshine Coast Bunyas Knockout, a new annual Indigenous rugby league carnival.
Sunshine Coast Bunyas Inc will host the inaugural event over three days from 15-17 October at the Nambour Rugby League Club.
Division 10 Councillor David Law said it was a great initiative for the First Nations community and for our strong league community to support.
“This is an opportunity to support and connect with some of our First National local businesses as well – the event manager, sponsors, suppliers and stallholders,” Cr Law said.
The event will open with a Smoking Ceremony on Friday night followed by the match draw, along with community activities, markets, and a raffle. Spectators are welcome to the Nambour Rugby League Club and must follow any COVID safe regulations in place.
The Knockout has been supported via Council’s Sport Industry Development Program, which is jointly funded by the Commonwealth and Queensland Governments under the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements, and through Council’s Community Grants Program.
Sunshine Coast Bunyas president Brad Beetson said the event would bring community to the Sunshine Coast again after testing the waters last year with a 10-team carnival at Nambour.
“The committee and I identified that there was a need for the Sunshine Coast to host a Rugby League Knockout as it has never been done before,” Mr Beetson said.
“It is unique and will be the first of its kind on the Sunshine Coast. Reuniting mob is another key purpose of the Knockout. There’s nothing better than Rugby League to bring everyone together and celebrate our culture, talent and the Sunshine Coast.
“We really hope it will provide a platform through the vehicle of Rugby League to draw communities together and connect people, something that has been missing since the COVID pandemic.
“It’s going to be a huge boost not only for our families and players but also for Nambour and the beautiful Sunshine Coast. It will be a great opportunity to showcase the beautiful homelands of the Kabi Kabi peoples and Jinibara peoples of the Sunshine Coast and pay our respects.
“There’s some really good support behind this new competition, and plenty of motivation for the teams to do their best to get a share of a $6000 prize pool.
“Women’s Rugby League is the fastest growing area of the game and we are thrilled the Knockout will have both women and girls playing,” Mr Beetson said.
A total of 28 teams are expected to participate, six Sunshine Coast teams, and another 22 coming from all over South-East Queensland including Brisbane, Cherbourg, Ipswich and Toowoomba, to name just a few.
Image: 2019 Murri Carnival courtesy of Sunshine Coast Bunyas