Strate­gic and geo­graphic op­tions

Isis Town and Country - - Sport -

WHEN Lon­greach hosted an In­trust Su­per Cup game it wasn’t about grow­ing lo­cal par­tic­i­pa­tion num­bers.

O’Con­nor said that was born out of a re­la­tion­ship with re­tired Gre­gory MP Vaughan John­son.

“There was no real par­tic­i­pa­tion growth in that one. It was more an op­por­tu­nity to use the game to give the com­mu­nity a boost,” O’Con­nor said.

“That is sig­nif­i­cantly dif­fer­ent to Emer­ald.

“The rea­son we went there was FIFO work­ers had left and the town econ­omy, and the lo­cal league, needed a boost.”

Host­ing an In­trust Su­per Cup game was “enor­mously suc­cess­ful” for Emer­ald and al­lowed Queens­land Rugby League to in­vest in lo­cal league.

“They’ll pay for their en­tire 2015 ex­penses from that,” he said.

O’Con­nor stressed there was no one way hosts were determined, with ev­ery town hav­ing its own pos­i­tive and neg­a­tive ap­peal.

“Stan­thorpe are in the mix this year and I know Bund­aberg are in ac­tion and that’s been through the Capras,” he said.

“It’s a real com­bi­na­tion of how and what ac­tiv­ity takes place.

“North­ern Pride and Mackay are usu­ally left to their own de­vices as they have strong re­la­tion­ships with clubs up there and we’ve con­sulted with them.

“Clubs like Norths in Bris­bane don’t have those com­mu­nity con­nec­tions.

“We’ll pick a few places that are strate­gi­cally im­por­tant.”

PHOTO: JOR­DAN PHILP

BIG ROLE: Nanango MP Deb Freck­ling­ton played a ma­jor role in se­cur­ing Kin­garoy as a Coun­try Week host last year.

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