Ori­gin a ‘ cult’ for PNG fans

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS - GE­OFF CHAM­BERS

WILD vi­o­lence, drunken brawls and fa­tal road ac­ci­dents have sparked a call for PNG to ban the live screen­ing of State of Ori­gin matches.

Gov­ern­ment of­fi­cials in the rugby league- mad coun­try are be­ing pres­sured to stop Ori­gin tele­casts to help save the lives of “crazy” fans.

At least three peo­ple were killed dur­ing this year’s Ori­gin se­ries in the coun­try’s north and near the cap­i­tal, Port Moresby.

A fur­ther five peo­ple died in a tragic truck ac­ci­dent near Mt Ha­gen, and houses and busi­nesses dam­aged by an­gry ri­val fans.

Enga pro­vin­cial po­lice com­man­der act­ing Su­per­in­ten­dent Ge­orge Kakas told The Na­tional news­pa­per rugby league matches were “of no ben­e­fit” to PNG cit­i­zens.

Supt Kakas com­pared the pas­sion of PNG State of Ori­gin fans to a “cult” where peo­ple wor­shipped and sac­ri­ficed their lives for the cause.

At a vil­lage near Wabag, youths re­port­edly threw rocks at each other fol­low­ing the de­cider, where Queens­land thumped NSW 52- 6.

“Now the young gen­er­a­tion are paint­ing their faces with the Blues and Ma­roons colours and start get­ting ex­cited one day be­fore the game starts,” Supt Kakas said.

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