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The Intrust Super Cup has a proud history of producing players who are ready to perform on the big stage, and it doesn’t get any bigger than NRL grand final day.

This year, 17 of the players named in the Melbourne Storm’s 22-man squad for this Sunday’s NRL grand final have played in the Queensland / Intrust Super Cup system, playing 497 games in total.

Some of these include current Maroons stars in skipper Cameron Smith and halfback Cooper Cronk, as well as rising stars of the game like former CQ Capra and Easts Tiger Cameron Munster.

Nine Storm players have featured in the Intrust Super Cup this year, taking part in 61 games.

Melbourne have a well-established feeder arrangement with the Easts Tigers and Sunshine Coast Falcons that has allowed Queensland rugby league fans to see some NRL stars in action up close this year.

Their grand final opponents the Sharks also have players who have spent time in the Cup. Former Ipswich Jet Kurt Capewell was a late withdrawal from last year’s NRL State Championship team and is set to be replaced by another former Jet in Sam Tagataese on the bench in this year's NRL decider.

New Zealand international Gerard Beale and Michael “the menace” Ennis also played Cup; with the former Origin hooker running around for Aspley in 2007.

Not only is grand final day the peak for players – match officials will also get to experience the opportunity to test themselves on the biggest stage.

QRL Referees’ High Performance Unit members Peter Gough (lead referee) and Nick Morel (touch judge) will be involved in the Intrust Super Championship match. Peter Gough has officiated in 60 Intrust Super Cup games, with Nick Morel one ahead on 61. Former Queensland match official Brett Suttor, who will be a touch judge for the NRL Grand Final, has officiated in 48 Queensland Cup games.

All in all, the second tier has never been closer to the first.

See all the referee appointments for NRL grand final day via Referee Appointments.

For a full list of former Queensland / Intrust Super Cup players involved in NRL grand final day 2016, see below*:

Melbourne Storm

Cameron Munster 
46 (Central Queensland / Easts Tigers – 2012-15)
Suliasi Vunivalu
19 (Sunshine Coast / Easts Tigers – 2015/16) – six games in 2016
Will Chambers 
22 (Norths – 2006/7)
Cheyse Blair   
5 (Easts Tigers – 2016) five games in 2016
Marika Koroibete
1 (Easts Tigers – 2014)
Cooper Cronk 61 (Norths – 2001/05)
Cameron Smith   28 (Norths – 2001/02)
Jordan McLean   11 (Easts Tigers / Sunshine Coast – 2011 & 2015)
Kenny Bromwich 42 (Easts Tigers / Sunshine Coast – 2012/15)
Tim Glasby       98 (Central Queensland / Easts Tigers – 2010/14)
Christian Welch 22 (Easts Tigers – 2015/16) eight games in 2016
Ben Hampton 31 (Easts Tigers / Sunshine Coast – 2013, 15/16) three games in 2016
Young Tonumaipea 23 (Sunshine Coast / Easts Tigers – 2015/16) eight games in 2016
Slade Griffin 14 (Sunshine Coast / Easts Tigers – 2015/16) 10 games in 2016
Matt White 23 (Ipswich / Burleigh / Tweed / Easts – 2009, 11/12, 14/16) 12 in 2016
Felise Kaufusi 45 (Northern Pride / Easts Tigers / Falcons – 2013/16) three in 2016

Cronulla Sharks

Michael Ennis 3 (Aspley, 2007)
Gerard Beale 6 (Wynnum Manly, 2009)
Sam Tagataese   
37 (Norths / Ipswich Jets - 2004-7, 2009-11)
Kurt Capewell     53 (Wynnum Manly / Ipswich Jets – 2011/12, 2014/15)

*Statistics by Brad Tallon

Acknowledgement of Country

Queensland Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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