Melbourne will be centre stage for the highlight of the National Rugby League (NRL) pre-season when the Australian Indigenous All-Stars take on the New Zealand Maori Kiwis for the first time at AAMI Park in February.
Minister for Tourism and Major Events John Eren announced the blockbuster today, which will be a celebration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and will take place in Melbourne for the first time ever.
The Rugby League All-Stars event will be a celebration of Indigenous excellence on and off the field and provide players a chance to represent both their countries and their cultures.
Rugby League is on the rise in Melbourne, with Victoria set to host five major NRL matches in the next six years – two State of Origins in 2021 and 2025, this Harvey Norman All Stars Game and further International Test Matches in 2022 and 2023.
The Andrews Labor Government’s Major Events Fund played a key role in securing this stellar Rugby League Events Package.
On top of this landmark deal, the Labor Government will invest $12 million to build a Rugby League Centre of Excellence in Broadmeadows, with the centre to pave the way for the introduction of a Melbourne Storm women’s team in the new NRL Women’s Premiership.
The centre will include playing fields, high-performance facilities and an administrative-base for NRL Victoria.
The Centre and the NRL women’s license are part of the Labor Government’s massive $241.6 million investment in women’s and community sport – the biggest community sport investment in Victoria’s history.
Tickets to the All-Stars match will go on sale from 10:00am on Tuesday 21 August, with the match to take place on 15 February 2019.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Tourism and Major Events John Eren
“I can’t wait to watch Australia go head-to-head with our Trans-Tasman rival in what promises to be a great advertisement for Rugby League.”
“Major events like the Indigenous All-Stars match provide a major boost to our economy – keeping our bars, restaurants and hotels full and supporting local jobs.”
Quotes attributable to Minister for Aboriginal Affairs Natalie Hutchins
“It’s more than just a great sporting spectacle – this will be a celebration of Indigenous culture both on and off the field."
“The Andrews Labor Government is paving the way for more diversity in sport and empowering Aboriginal Victorians.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020