Contributed by: Troy Thompson Wednesday, September 25 2019 @ 01:56 pm ACST
Source: Government of the Republic of Nauru - NauruNews [*1]
Thirty-five players and officials from the Boe Lions’ 2019 AFL Premiership winning squad will be flown to Brisbane free-of-charge by the Republic of Nauru Government, Minister for Sport Hon. Maverick Eoe announced yesterday (Tuesday).
Minister Eoe said the Government’s gesture was a fitting reward for the Boe Lions’ “hard work and sweat” in over-coming Panzer in Saturday’s Grand Final at Linkbelt Oval.
“Today, I can officially announce that the Republic of Nauru Government’s Sports Department is fully committed to paying for the tickets for 35 Boe Lions players and officials to travel to Brisbane,” Minister Eoe said.
“This is a wonderful prize for the team winning this year’s Premiership Cup. I was there on Saturday in the large crowd, and it was a terrific and tightly fought contest between two very good teams.
“Unfortunately, there could only be one winner, with the Lions securing their maiden division A title after they came back in the final quarter to overcome the defending Premiers in a thriller.
“I didn’t tell the two teams before the final that the government would be flying the winners to Brisbane, because I wanted to keep it a surprise.”
Minor Premiers Boe were trailing at three quarter time against Panzer in Saturday’s grand final before storming home in the final term to win by two points – 55-53.
Minister Eoe said the Republic of Nauru Government had allocated funding to cover the 35 return tickets.
He said it was still unclear when the Boe Lions would be travelling to Brisbane, a city also with an AFL team called the Lions, who were knocked out of this year’s finals by GWS at the Gabba.
“I guess once the Nauru players and coaching staff finish their well-deserved celebrations, they’ll look ahead to when they want to go to Brisbane,” he said.
“While the Government of Nauru has previously sponsored AFL teams to travel to Australia, that was for them to take part in international competitions.
“This is the first time the Government has provided funding for a squad to travel there just for R-and-R – it is a well-deserved prize for the premiership winning team,” he said.