Seven new venues for Country Week

QRL announce Seven new venues for 2018 Intrust Super Cup Country Week

Venues for the 2018 Intrust Super Cup Country Week have been announced.

The Get in the Game Country Week is heading into another year, with the Queensland Government right behind it, as rugby league gives back to regional parts of Queensland.

This year will see seven new locations stretching from the border town of Goondiwindi to Lae in Papua New Guinea, and other towns spread down the coastline and out west.

It’s a brilliant concept and is always well received and well supported by the players and locals. They don’t just fly in and out quickly.  Teams get there early and immerse themselves in the region, a good rugby league story for a change.

Could the NRL do it? Of course, and they should. Given some of the paltry crowds for certain time slots, why not take a whole round of fixtures to the country and celebrate their contribution to the game?

And so onto the venues announced for the 2018 Intrust Super Cup Country Week. The games are listed below, with a little tourist tip in case anyone wants to follow their team to the Country Week venues.

2018 Intrust Super Cup Country Week

Maryborough Burleigh Bears v CQ Capras

The Match Crystal Ball: The Bears will probably on their way to a minor premiership, Central hopefully on their way to midfield and beyond.

Distance for Central Capras 382km — Distance for Burleigh Bears 343km

Know the Local Side: Maryborough Brothers

Tourist Bit – Maryborough is the Home of Mary Poppins, so what better way to spend your time and balance the rugby league. There’s also the Fairies of Bauple Mountain, and Tiaro on the way up from the South East.

Cooktown – Northern Pride v Ipswich Jets

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The Match Crystal Ball: Could be a battle between two sides on the fringe of finals football by the time this game comes around.

Distance for Northern Pride 328km — Distance for Ipswich Jets 2023km

Know the Local Side: Cooktown Crocs

Tourist Bit – The home of the Cooktown Orchid – Queensland’s Floral Emblem.

Goondiwindi – Redcliffe Dolphins v Easts Tigers (TV GAME)

The Match Crystal Ball: Two big ISC teams likely to fighting over top 6 spots. The TV game has chosen wisely, plus is almost the closest game to Brisbane.

Distance for Easts Tigers 343km — Distance for Redcliffe 383km

Know the Local Side: Goondiwindi Boars

Tourist Bit – There’s a statue in town for one of the country’s most loved racehorses – Gunsynd.

Normanton – Souths Logan Magpies v Wynnum Manly Seagulls

The Match Crystal Ball: Perhaps the Magpies are on their way to a Top 4 spot by then. Wynnum a fringe Top 6 side. A long trip awaits both sides into one of the more remote places for Country Week.

Distance for Souths Logan 2083km — Distance for Wynnum 2104km

Know the Local Side: Normanton Stingers

Tourist Bit – Ride the Gulflander train to Croydon and back. But better get up on the Wednesday for the weekly trip.

Bowen – Sunshine Coast Falcons v Mackay Cutters

The Match Crystal Ball: Falcons will be thereabouts for finals, Mackay possibly trying to avoid the wooden spoon. Mackay have the shortest trip of all teams though.

Distance for Mackay 194km  — Distance for Sunshine Coast 1061km

Know the Local Side: Bowen

Tourist Bit – Where else but to the Giant Mango could you possibly go and visit.

Hughenden – Tweed Heads Seagulls v Townsville Blackhawks

The Match Crystal Ball: Townsville will be scrapping over the top 6 sides like so many, and a change of scenery may bring a change of luck for the Seagulls.

Distance for Tweed Heads 1699km — Distance for Townsville 390km

Know the Local Side: Hughenden Bulls

Tourist Bit – Home of the Hughenden Dinosaur Festival, and you can see a replica of a Muttaburrasaurus, the local dinosaur.

Lae – PNG Hunters v Norths Devils 

The Match Crystal Ball: On current form the Hunters will need every win at home, Norths won in Port Moresby last year. First time that the PNG Country Week games has shifted from the main ground. Although they did play in the very remove Kokopo for their first two seasons.

Distance for PNG Hunters 45min flight — Distance for Norths 6 hour flight

Know the Local Side: Lae Snax Tigers

Tourist Bit – The Kokoda trail is between Port Moresby and Lae, perhaps do the trek whilst you’re in PNG.

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