SP PNG Hunters Board Chairman Stan Joyce says there is a significant PNG Community in Queensland to support the team while they are away.
“My connection with PNG goes back over 40 years and I can assure you we are all very much aware of the need to provide cultural and moral support to the players,” Joyce said in a statement read out on his behalf by PNGRFL Chairman Sandis Tsaka at the official launch of the SP PNG 2021 season in Port Moresby today.
The event organised by naming rights sponsors SP Brewery was also an opportunity for all sponsors and partners to farewell the team to Queensland.
Joyce reminded the players that the public in PNG as well as the sponsors had high expectations.
“Based on my experience with the Hunters thus far, I have every confidence you will make the best effort possible and always put PNG, our Home in a very good light,” Joyce said. “A lot of people have invested time and effort in this project.”
The former SP Brewery Managing Director was appointed Chairman of the SP Hunters Board in October last year.
“I was very honoured to be involved as it provided me an opportunity to remain associated with one of the most successful PNG Sporting ventures,” Joyce said. “I hold the belief that this venture is an important stepping stone to our ultimate goal of a team in the NRL.”
He said in line with best practices, the QRL has specified that this venture should be run by an independent Board of Directors. “Due to the fact much of our operation this year will be held in Australia due to COVID-19 restrictions, we also needed to set up a Board and company in that country,” he said.
He thanked fellow Directors, Ambassador Robert Aisi, Frank Bouraga, Anna Solomon and Moses Williams from the naming rights sponsor for agreeing to join the Board.
“Each of these Directors also sits on the Australian Based Board with the addition of Jeremy Edwards, the Southern Hemisphere General Manager of International Rugby League,” Joyce said.