Queenstown’s staunchest league fan hopes to start a grass-roots club competition in the resort with a winner-takes-all $10,000 prize.
Henry Proctor, a Wakatipu Cougars stalwart, is part-way through setting up a men’s nine-a-side tournament for New Zealand and international players to run from October 9-12 – the weekend after the NRL grand final in Sydney.
He’s not just hoping to attract club-level league players but also wants to open it up so other codes can have a crack at the game.
“If they win, they get an opportunity to take $10,000 home for their club,” Proctor says.
He’s hoping to attract up to 16 teams for the tournament, to be played at Queenstown’s Recreation Ground.
The idea behind the comp is to give the sport a higher profile in the resort.
If the inaugural event is successful, Proctor plans similar tournaments for women and masters.
He’s recently been in Auckland promoting the idea and this week heads to Invercargill and Christchurch to drum up support.
He’s charging each player $100 to enter – registrations close July 31.