JCU rugby celebrates 50th
JAMES Cook University Rugby Union is celebrating 50 years worth of on- field achievement and camaraderie.
JCU Rugby kicked off its 50- year anniversary last night with informal drinks, and continues today with a full afternoon’s worth of games at JCU’s main sports oval.
The celebration continues tomorrow with a final catch- up at Tom’s Tavern, where old mates will no doubt regale each other with stories from their glory days.
JCU Rugby life member Les Sampson will be one of about 90 former players coming together from all corners of the country for the big weekend. “The club’s had its ups and downs throughout the years, but it’s always been a lot of fun,” said Sampson, who played his first year with JCU in 1971.
“It started in 1967 and a whole group of us came out of Brisbane to come here for university and the club really started to hit its straps in 197172.
“We made the first grade grand final in 1971 and we won reserve grade, and we had a pretty strong 10 years.
“We have some of the original guys from 1967 to 1969 coming along, and some players who are attending we haven’t seen in 40 years.”
Tomorrow’s on- field action at JCU kicks off with a women’s game between Western Suburbs and Teachers West at 2pm, followed by another women’s clash between University and North Ward at 2.50pm.
The day’s third grade game between University and Western Suburbs follows, then the main game gets under way between Uni and Charters Towers in second grade at 5pm.
“Part of the reunion is to weld our supporter base together because we want to get back into first grade in the next few years,” Sampson said.
“But we’re proud of our current grades, and our women’s team has won its competition for the past two years and we’re very confident they can do it again.”