Pictured: Normanton product Davin Crampton is now playing for the Northern Pride.
Remote communities from across North Queensland will descend on Cairns this weekend for the annual NQ Challenge rugby league carnival.
The regions participating will be Southern Cape (comprising players from Pormpuraaw, Coen Hopevale, Wujal and Cooktown), Northern Cape (players from Aurukun, Napranum, Lockhart River, Weipa, Mapoon and NPA) Torres Strait, Palm Island and Bowen.
Queensland Rugby League Regional Coordinator David Maiden said every team will play each other over the weekend, with games at Stan Williams Park on Saturday and Sunday, starting at 9.00am both days.
“The football will be fast and furious and is sure to be well supported by the Cairns community,” said Maiden.
“The communities taking part in the carnival love their footy, and it’s all about bringing communities together and creating pathways for individuals to get to the next level.
“Often roads are cut off in remote areas of north Queensland, especially during the wet season, so we’re really pleased this carnival will provide opportunities for the region’s most talented players to show their skills.”
Following the carnival, a Northern United team will be selected to play against Queensland Outback on July 19 on Thursday Island.
“The QRL is providing funding to assist teams with accommodation and meal costs but we need funding from other sources to help with travel and associated costs,” Maiden said.
“This would help create many more opportunities for talented individuals in remote communities to develop skills and experience representative football.”
Maiden said Normanton’s Davin Crampton was one such example, with the exciting utility now starring for the Northern Pride in the Intrust Super Cup, one level below the National Rugby League.