Presented to the winners of the sport’s pinnacle international event, the trophy has never before been on PNG soil and upon arriving on Thursday, marked the six-month milestone until the country hosts three pools games as part of the 2017 Rugby League World Cup (RLWC2017).
Speaking at an official welcome event held at the National Football Stadium (NFS), RLWC2017 CEO Andrew Hill reflected upon the excitement and anticipation surrounding the event, particularly the fixtures in PNG.
“The eyes of the sporting world will be fixed on Papua New Guinea during October and November, when Port Moresby hosts the Kumuls three Rugby League World Cup pool games against Wales, Ireland, and the USA.
"THE 2017 RUGBY LEAGUE WORLD CUP WILL BE AN EVENT THAT STOPS THE NATION, ALLOWING THE PEOPLE OF PAPUA NEW GUINEA TO SHOWCASE THEIR PRIDE AT HOSTING A GLOBAL SPORTING EVENT, AND WILL BRING COMMUNITIES TOGETHER LIKE NO OTHER EVENT COULD."
Earlier this year, Oil Search was announced as an Official Platinum Partner of the tournament and a key supporter of the tournament’s in-country community programme, which includes an extensive Trophy Tour in the lead up to the RLWC2017..
“As an Official Platinum Partner of this year’s Rugby League World Cup, Oil Search with their incredibly strong community focus, have partnered with the Organising Committee to bring the Paul Barrière Trophy to Papua New Guinea for an official Trophy Tour,” continued Hill.
“Not everyone will have the opportunity to attend a match here in Port Moresby, however over a four-week period during September and October, the Oil Search Trophy Tour will travel to as many communities as possible throughout Papua New Guinea.
“THIS JOINT INITIATIVE BETWEEN THE ORGANISING COMMITTEE AND OIL SEARCH IS ACKNOWLEDGMENT FOR THE INTEREST AND SUPPORT THAT PAPUA NEW GUINEA HAS FOR RUGBY LEAGUE, IT WILL ALLOW BOYS AND GIRLS, MEN AND WOMEN FROM ACROSS THE COUNTRY TO SHARE AND EXPERIENCE THE EXCITEMENT OF THE RUGBY LEAGUE WORLD CUP.”
Oil Search Managing Director, Peter Botten says they are thrilled to partner with the tournament organisers to bring the prestigious event to PNG.
“Oil Search is proud to be the community partner of the biggest sporting event in Papua New Guinea this year, a tournament that will galvanise national pride across the country.
“RUGBY LEAGUE IS OUR NATIONAL SPORT AND TO BE ABLE TO TAKE THE MOST SOUGHT-AFTER PRIZE IN INTERNATIONAL RUGBY LEAGUE TO THE PEOPLE OF PNG WILL ENABLE MORE PEOPLE ACROSS THE COUNTRY TO EXPERIENCE THE EXCITEMENT AND MAGIC OF THE RUGBY LEAGUE WORLD CUP."
“We look forward to embarking upon our extended Oil Search Rugby League World Cup Trophy Tour in September and being part of such a significant community event.”
Rugby League fans in Port Moresby and surrounds will be able to see the Paul Barrière Trophy on Saturday 29 April at the Vision City outdoor amphitheatre between 9am – 11am and later that afternoon at the SP PNG Hunters game against the Northern Pride at the NFS.