Sydney Roosters star Blake Ferguson met with Queensland’s finest Under 15 Indigenous rugby league players last weekend.
The talented team was selected from the recent Queensland Aboriginal & Islander Health Council (QAIHC) Arthur Beetson Foundation Murri Rugby League Carnival, where all players undertook a medical health check and met the 90% school attendance requirement.
With backing from the University of Queensland, the squad assembled under Coach Sid Domic on November 27.
The squad participated in a number of educational and cultural activities over the weekend, including a special corroboree at Dreamworld and a visit to Cherbourg’s famous Ration Shed Museum.
Ferguson spent the day with the squad and spoke openly with the youngsters, focusing on the value of sport, particularly rugby league, as a vehicle for delivering healthy lifestyle messages and supporting behaviour change.
Exceptionally proud of his indigenous heritage, Ferguson was honoured to be invited to speak to the team.
“There are a lot of indigenous players in rugby league and I’m proud to be one of them,” said Ferguson.
“Rugby league has done a lot for me, so when the Arthur Beetson Foundation asked if I could make the trip up, it was a huge honour. It was great spending the day with the lads and talking about how they can use sport – especially rugby league – and a healthy lifestyle to help their personal, academic, health and sporting development.”
The weekend formed an integral part of the team’s preparations ahead of the All Stars weekend in February, where the same group will play as the Under 16 Queensland Murri team against the Under 16 NSW Koori team before the Indigenous All Stars v World All Stars clash.