The Mackay Cutters are excited to announce that the North Queensland Cowboys will host the Melbourne Storm in a pre-season trial match in Mackay early next year.
The trial will be played at BB Print Stadium, home of the Mackay Cutters, on Saturday, March 2.
It will be preceded by a clash between the new-look Cutters team and another QRL Intrust Super Cup team yet to be confirmed.
A women’s rugby league game will also be a feature on the day as the Women’s competition goes from strength-to-strength in the region.
In announcing the trial, Cutters CEO Troy Rovelli acknowledged the work of the Mackay Regional Council in their role in bringing such a high-profile game to the North Queensland city.
“The council have been terrific every step of the way, and we can’t thank them enough for the role they’ve played in making this match possible,” Rovelli said.
“We know the people of Mackay love the Cowboys, they’ll embrace this match and we look forward to packing out our stadium come March 2.”
Mackay Mayor Greg Williamson said it was exciting the Cowboys were returning to Mackay for a pre-season NRL trial.
“The last time they were in town was in 2017 for the NRL trial game against the Sydney Roosters and we had a sell-out crowd to watch the game,’’ Williamson said.
“They certainly have plenty of fans in our region and it is fantastic we’ll get to see them in action against the 2017 NRL premiership winners and 2018 premiership contesting NRL team at BB Print Stadium Mackay.
“We’ve helped secure this game through our Invest Mackay Events and Conference Attraction program as it will provide an economic boost for the region.
“This will be the first NRL pre-season trial game the Cowboys have played in Mackay since they took on the Roosters at the start of 2017.”
The match will mark the 14th time the Cowboys have taken a game to Mackay in the past 18 seasons.
Current NRL squad members Barba, Mitchell Dunn, Shane Wright and Kurt Wiltshire also played large portions of their junior football in the region.
Cowboys Acting CEO Jeff Reibel said the club was deeply committed to engaging with members and fans across the whole of the club’s footprint, with the March 2nd trial match the perfect way to connect with Mackay and surrounds.
“Mackay is true rugby league heartland and a true Cowboys heartland. We can’t wait to get down there and play in March,” Reibel said.
“It’s truly special moment to take the game to our regions and to be able to run out in front of our North Queensland fans. I know we’ll create more of these treasured memories on March 2.”
Ticketing information for the match will be released at a later date.