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Frank Fisher Cup to boost morale in Burnett

Excitement is building for the revamped Frank Fisher Cup, with the best Indigenous talent in Central Queensland set to face off against the Queensland Police Service.

The clash honours the late Frank 'Big Shot' Fisher, an outstanding South Burnett sportsman and ultra-competitive five-eighth and captain of his Cherbourg side who was later named named in the national “Indigenous Team of the Century” in 2008, and aims to boost morale and promote reconciliation by using rugby league as a vehicle to bring communities together.

Hosted in conjunction with the Murgon Mustangs' domestic violence awareness round, QRL Central chair Danny McGuire was anticipating the revamped concept which follows on from the inaugural Frank Fisher Cup held last year would make a difference to the South Burnett region.

"The initial idea for the game came about from a discussion with Brad Beetson discussing community issues in the South Burnett," McGuire said.

"We felt that that recognising a great like Frank Fisher and combining with welfare sessions could make a difference in terms of mental health and reducing incidences of self harm and suicide.

"The initial carnival encompassed four sides from the four areas in QRL Central, but COVID-19 created a few issues with a re-run in 2021, so the decision was made to select an invitational team from the region in place of the four teams."

The Sunshine Coast Bunyas in action at last year's Frank Fisher Cup. Photo: Cameron Stallard/QRL
The Sunshine Coast Bunyas in action at last year's Frank Fisher Cup. Photo: Cameron Stallard/QRL

The team - selected from recent 47th Battalion carnival - will face the the Queensland Police Service rugby league team that was recently selected from a tri-series on the Gold Coast and will be the final event in a week-long campaign promoting domestic violence awareness and providing strategies to combat domestic violence within the communities of South Burnett.

The match gives the opportunity for Indigenous players to not only represent their local heritage, but also give back to the community.

"Players are keen to represent their mob and many have had exposure to domestic violence in the past and want to put back something into the community," McGuire said.

"The team represents much of QRL Central and bringing them together enriches their experience.

"Also, the promotion of our strong relationship with the Queensland Police Service only enhances the game day.

"I certainly hope that this game concept will continue in the future."

The match kicks off at 3pm this Saturday at Murgon and will be broadcast live and free on QRL.com.au and the QRL Facebook page.

Frank Fisher Invitational v Queensland Police Service

Frank Fisher Invitational v Queensland Police Service

Frank Fisher Invitational

1. Barwoo Fisher 2. Daron Bligh 3. Caleb Tull 4. Josh Stanton 5. Bronson Fogarty 6. Travis Field 7. Marcus Tanner 8. Nathan Gaulton 9. Paddy Alberts 10. Norman Wragge 11. Vincent Law 12. Damon Anderson 13. Reuban Hamson 14. Peter Langton 15. Seaton Reid 16. Ollie Peak 17. Jensen Dreamer 18. Jack Beetson

Coach: Justin Brown

Queensland Police Service

1. Nathan Draman 2. Hayden Lea 3. Mick O’Keefe 4. Cody Maughan 5. Lachlan Lundin 6. Russell Satour 7. Kyle Everett 8. Luke Polson 9. Troy O’Sullivan 10. Rhys Bennett 11. Dane Stretton 12. Ryley Kajewski 13. Ben Gadsby 14. Carter O'Zanne 15. Jack Connor 16. Boyd Ahmat 17. Dan Horne 18. Russell Mundy 19. Daniel Hess

Coach: Nick Paterson