What's new
The Front Row Forums

Register a free account today to become a member of the world's largest Rugby League discussion forum! Once signed in, you'll be able to participate on this site by adding your own topics and posts, as well as connect with other members through your own private inbox!

PNG's back.

I don’t think it’s fair to judge pngs ability to produce players when they dont have an nrl team and pathways system. It will take a few years, and there has to be big concerns about how they build a competitive squad for those early years, but I have no doubt they will eventually. That’s presuming they have the resources to invest in pathways,
They need better pathways for their juniors.


PNG and surrounds has some beautiful countryside and if they can get their act together can be just as attractive a destination as Vanuatu or New Caledonia..They have the scenery and beaches, but they need to seriously work on their problems..


Back to Basics! Week 2 of our pilot PNG Rugby League Academy Program has our young men starting at the basics with skills on grip and holding the ball, passing the ball, discipline and coordination.
Thank you again to all the parents and families who came out to support their children today





Back to Basics! Week 2 of our pilot PNG Rugby League Academy Program has our young men starting at the basics with skills on grip and holding the ball, passing the ball, discipline and coordination.
Thank you again to all the parents and families who came out to support their children today

are they AFL posts in the background, 8 of them?


Flag poles used during the 2015 Pacific Games.
Yes PNG play a derivative of AFL, its called PFL
Rules are similar but you must run up the stairs before you may punt the ball thru any of the 7 gaps, everything is a behind.... this can go straight to western pasifika porcupines thread for all time great pasifika sporting ideas of all time...
...spines up!!!


The dickhead probably assumes it already is since they've ''conquered'' NSW and QLD already
If the situation was reversed and png was an afl nation and they were adding an afl team there (instead of Tasmania) this forum would be butthurt to the max

rugby league fans are great at taking for granted what they have

Brick Tamland


How rugby league could stop China’s march in the Pacific​

ByAdrian Proszenko

July 29, 2023 — 3.02pm

When rugby league was at war with itself, John Ribot sold the vision of the game’s stars becoming household names in China.
While that never transpired – Latrell Mitchell and Andrew Ettingshausen could walk through downtown Beijing without getting noticed – China is playing a key role in where the NRL may expand a quarter of a century later.
The Australian and Papua New Guinean governments have a shared ambition for the Pacific nation to be granted the NRL’s 18th licence. It is an opportunity to bring the sports-loving people of two countries, separated by just four kilometres of Torres Strait, even closer together.
There are, however, far greater motives behind the Australian government’s support, underscored by a $5.5 million pledge last week to grow the game in PNG.

As the gateway to Asia, PNG holds increasing geopolitical importance for Australia as China extends its influence in the Pacific. While Australia can’t compete in a chequebook war with Xi Jinping, it can offer the Pacific nation something China can’t – “rugba leegue”.
PNG is the only country that claims rugby league as its national sport, where NRL stars are feted as demigods.

Granting PNG its own NRL franchise, more than any other gesture or boatloads of yuan, would win the hearts and minds of a nation. Which is why the Australian government is right behind the idea.
“I’d have to seriously consider changing teams if this comes off,” says Pat Conroy, a passionate Sydney Roosters fan, who also happens to be Australia’s Minister for Defence and Minister for the Pacific.

Conroy, having visited PNG just a week ago, is one of the driving forces in an Albanese government prepared to underwrite many of the franchise costs. The expense would be in the tens of millions – the asset-rich Dolphins in Brisbane’s north required a $50 million bank guarantee before being awarded the 17th NRL licence – but it is soft diplomacy that comes significantly cheaper than the $300 billion outlay for nuclear submarines.
What’s more, it would bind two nations.

“It would be a great thing for PNG because sport unites people,” Conroy says. “I’ve seen Prime Minister [James] Marape talk about his vision for an NRL PNG team and how it could bring his nation together.
“PNG is probably the most diverse nation in the world, with over 800 languages spoken. You need to think about how you bring a country together, and sport, particularly their passion for NRL, can do that.

“Prime Minister [Marape] often talks about comparing it to what Nelson Mandela did in South Africa in using the Rugby World Cup in 1995 to bring his nation together. Obviously, they are not dealing with post-apartheid, they are dealing with a country that is very diverse. He’s also very keen for the lessons around sport, teamwork, discipline and healthy lifestyles, to flow through to their communities.”
The best-case scenario is this: the NRL gives PNG the nod in 2025, the year it celebrates 50 years of independence, with a view to joining the competition in 2027. The majority of home games would be played in Port Moresby, with a second headquarters in Cairns to help with logistical and travel issues.

The side would have its own national identity, potentially with some Pasifika representation from the likes of neighbours Fiji, Samoa and Tonga. Which means the North Sydney Bears, seeking to partner with anyone resembling a prospective bidder, will remain in hibernation.
The NRL would approve the licence, secure in the knowledge that the Australia and PNG governments would foot most of the bill. Any shortfall will be picked up by the many cashed-up corporate behemoths in PNG – such as ExxonMobil, Santos and Newcrest – which would clamour to be associated with the “greatest game of all”.

“There’s a growing interest with a lot of the corporate entities for its own team,” says Wapu Sonk, chairman of the PNG NRL bid board. “From a PNG perspective, we would like to think that the stars line up for us to be the 18th team when the time comes.”
For proof, consider Justin Olam. Born and raised in the mountainous Chimbu Province, Olam is the only PNG product to rise into the NRL ranks after playing all of his junior football locally. The Storm star, who enjoys rock star status when he returns home, makes more money from sponsorships and endorsements than any other player in the NRL.

Yet, the biggest challenge for the prospective franchise is developing enough Justin Olams to fill a roster.
“[Building development pathways] is crucial to success and even without a franchise we need to focus here, so we can build our players’ presence in the game,” Olam says. “Clubs and agents are starting to scout in PNG for talent, and we have more and more players coming through systems. We know we have athletes, so it’s not about talent ID, it’s about talent development.”

To that end, Joe Grima has been appointed as the head of elite player development in PNG. Grima – a former Sharks, Dragons and Eels assistant coach whose last NRL role was as Parramatta’s elite pathways coaching director – is upskilling the best young juniors in Port Moresby. The best players from 65 schools in the catchment area have been identified and placed in under-14s and under-16s academies, where they will get the same tuition as juniors in NRL systems.
The program, based on the pathways model of the Eels nursery, will eventually be rolled out nationally.

“From a testing background – in terms of physicality, fitness and speed – they are on par athletically [with elite Australian players],” Grima said. “Some even exceed some of the players I’ve tested previously. We can now compare the data against historic data that we have of 14- and 15-year-olds in Australia.
“Players like [Eels juniors] Jake Arthur, Samuel Loizou, Will Penisini or Dylan Brown – we have that historic data that we can measure our players here at the same age against. In just a short period of time we’ve seen an advancement of those skills and a willingness of those young men to jump on and follow instructions. It’s been really pleasing.”

The Manly Sea Eagles recently signed one of PNG’s most promising juniors. More are expected to flow into NRL systems in coming years.
“Lots of kids are playing rugby league; they’ve never had the opportunity to get the coaching we can deliver,” PNG NRL bid chief executive Andrew Hill says. “For the first time in the history of PNG, they have an NRL program being delivered under Joey Grima. Now some of those players who have been playing the game just because they love it will be able to go to the next level.”

That group may soon have an NRL franchise to aim for. However, they may not have to wait long to witness quality football on their shores due to a push for Test matches to be played in Port Moresby at the end of the season.
NRL chief executive Andrew Abdo and ARL Commission chairman Peter V’landys are attending an International Rugby League board meeting in Singapore. Top of the agenda is a window for Test matches to be played after the NRL grand final. The proposal is for Australia, New Zealand and Samoa to square off, while PNG will take on the Cook Islands and Fiji in their own series. The Australian and PNG governments will need to kick in money in order for the PNG matches to go ahead.

Asked about the perception that rugby league is playing a role in Australia’s foreign policy, Conroy says: “I’ve been frank with people that Australia wants to be the closest possible partner to Pacific nations.
“We’re a Pacific nation, we’re proud to be a member of the Pacific family. PNG is our closest neighbour and our dearest friend ... nothing unites them like rugby league.”


All the simps on here who say png won’t work are the exact same people who believed reebs when he promised to make rugby league big in China


All the simps on here who say png won’t work are the exact same people who believed reebs when he promised to make rugby league big in China
I never believed that "big in China" bs - yes that the top tier of the game should be more than NSW, Qld & Auckland, though.. and Superleague attracted a lot of people determined to make hard decisions to enable that... and I think PNG (as things currently stand) is a foolish option for expansion.

There are a number of options that are better developed for expanding to 20 teams, options that aren't 3rd world locations with serious infrastructure & security issues.

Perth Red

Post Whore
Has any fan of Vegas said we will be big in America ?

anyway it’s nice to see you responding to the term simp
When’s the college players coming? Won’t need png once we get all the yanks coming over to nrl. Vlandys got this.

Latest posts