Whit­sun­day to host Vik­ing Cup car­ni­val

Whitsunday Times - - SPORT -

RUGBY UNION

THE Whit­sun­days will host a wealth of rugby tal­ent this week­end as the Vik­ing Cup takes charge.

A prod­uct of the Whit­sun­day Raiders, the sec­ond an­nual Vik­ing Cup will take place at the Whit­sun­day Sportspark on Satur­day, boast­ing teams from Townsville, Bur­dekin, Mackay and the Cen­tral High­lands.

There are four teams in each grade, from un­der-8s, 10s, 12s, 14s and 16s, and they will lock horns for a fun-filled day from 11am.

Last year was the in­au­gu­ral Vik­ing Cup how­ever this year’s edi­tion has seen the par­tic­i­pa­tion-based tour­na­ment ex­pand con­sid­er­ably.

“We’re look­ing for­ward to the day,” Whit­sun­day Ju­nior Raiders pres­i­dent Shar­ron Pratt said. “It’s all about par­tic­i­pa­tion from both the play­ers and the par­ents and there’s no greater re­ward than see­ing smiles on the play­ers’ faces play­ing the game that they play in heaven.”

This year scouts Queens­land Rugby

from Union (QRU) will also be in attendance, and will pick a rep­re­sen­ta­tive squad to play for the Cen­tral High­lands at the state ti­tles next year.

Although the Whit­sun­day teams aren’t ex­posed to match sit­u­a­tions as of­ten as Mackay or Townsville-based clubs, Pratt pre­dicted the Raiders’ teams would be more than com­pet­i­tive.

“I think they’ll learn a lot,” she said.

“They will learn from hav­ing so many games and they will be com­pet­i­tive. We will sur­prise some of those teams from Townsville who have 20some­thing game sea­sons.”

The week­end’s tour­na­ment may be called the Vik­ing Cup, but par­tic­i­pants will not be vy­ing for an of­fi­cial ti­tle.

“It will be played in the spirit of rugby,” Pratt said.

“We call it the Vik­ing Cup but it’s all about the spirit of rugby, fair play, par­tic­i­pa­tion, sports­man­ship and re­spect for play­ers and their op­po­nents.” All play­ers are re­quired to at­tend train­ing on Fri­day from 6pm.

The Raiders’ un­der-16s are still search­ing for play­ers.

JU­NIOR RUGBY IS BACK: The Whit­sun­day Raiders' Vik­ing Cup will re­turn to the Whit­sun­days this week­end. The sec­ond ever run­ning of the an­nual event is ex­pected to draw teams from Townsville, Mackay and the Cen­tral High­lands.

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