Cairns Prepares To Welcome Dogs and Suns
Thursday, March 31 2016 @ 11:14 am ACDT
Contributed by: Wesley Hull
In excerpts from the media release from the AFL, the push has already begun to attract the biggest and best crowd possible for the annual AFL Premiership Match in the Tropical North Queensland city. The match this year will be a highlight of the Round 17 fixture, being played in Cairns on Saturday 16th July. Already this match is shaping as a super contest. After the first round of the 2016 AFL season, the Bulldogs sit atop the ladder after hammering Fremantle, whilst the Suns are third after doing the same to Essendon. Whilst things will change, both clubs seem set for bigger and better seasons…and a tropical battle could be a highlight of the season.
In Cairns with player Roarke Smith to help launch tickets going on sale, Western Bulldogs CEO David Stevenson said the club was looking forward to hosting a match at Cazalys Stadium for a third consecutive year.
“The Club is proud to return to Cairns for the third consecutive year to showcase AFL football in North Queensland.
“We have forged a great connection with the region thus far through our regular community and school visits and are grateful for the reception we’ve received to date by committed fans from across the country,” Mr Stevenson said.
“The game at Cazaly’s Stadium has become a fixture we look forward to and we hope to put on an exciting display in front of a vibrant, and energetic crowd when we return in July.”
Gold Coast SUNS CEO Andrew Travis, who joined Stevenson and Roarke in Cairns today, along with the club’s academy coach Andrew Raines spoke about the club’s continued commitment to the region.
“We always look forward to returning to Cairns for what promises to be another exciting match,” Mr Travis said.
“As a club we have established a significant foothold in the developing AFL region, which acts as a key recruitment catchment for the Gold Coast SUNS Talent Academy.
“From our commitment to the Gold Coast SUNS Talent Academy which has bases throughout the region, to community camps, pre-season games and AFL premiership fixtures, the Gold Coast Football Club will continue to support the growth of AFL in Far North Queensland.”
This year’s match at Cazalys Stadium will be held at night for the first time with a starting time of 7.25pm. The later timeslot will allow visitors escaping the chill of the southern winter to experience the warmth that the Tropical North Queensland region has to offer.
AFL Cairns President Gary Young said “the match has built momentum over the years and every game has been action packed, with excellent attendance numbers, we are pleased to offer locals and visitors to Cairns an opportunity to purchase tickets at Early Bird prices.”
Queensland Minister for Tourism and Major Events Kate Jones said the Premiership fixture was an important event showcasing Tropical North Queensland as a world class sporting event destination.
“The AFL Premiership match between the Western Bulldogs and Gold Coast Suns is an annual highlight on the Queensland events calendar,” Minister Jones said.
“Hosting this Premiership match showcases Tropical North Queensland to Australia and reinforces its position as a premier sporting event destination.
“I know fans travelling to support their teams will make the most of the amazing experiences Tropical North Queensland has on offer.”
Cairns Mayor Bob Manning welcomed the return of the Bulldogs and the Suns to the Far North for the July fixture.
“We have a strong sporting culture in Cairns and we value the opportunity to see top quality football on our own home turf,” Cr Manning said.
“It’s these events that help to inspire the next crop of sportspeople and grow the popularity of the sport in our region.
“We’re pleased to be once again be teaming up with TEQ, AFL Cairns and Cazalys to bring this game to the tropics and we thank the AFL and the Western Bulldogs for continuing to include Cairns as a venue.
“I hope the Cairns community will embrace this opportunity and take advantage of the early bird tickets.”
Fans planning to travel to Cairns for the match can also book their getaway through AFL Travel. AFL Travel offers the best available airfares, a range of affordable accommodation options and match tickets. Visit the website today at www.afltravel.com.au/destination/cairns.
Tourism and Events Queensland supports the Toyota AFL Premiership Season match in Cairns in July as part of the It’s Live! in Queensland major events calendar, which highlights the perfect union of world-class events and destinations in Queensland.