South East Queensland is in the hot seat for a new NRL team, with the Redcliffe Dolphins, Firehawks and the Ipswich Jets Rugby League Team vying for a license.
There was also a unified cry to put Moreton Bay Region on the national stage, with every single regional leader signing a letter of support backing the Dolphins’ NRL licence bid.
The Deputy Premier, a long-time Rugby League fan said having a local team in the NRL would be a game-changer for the region.
“While infrastructure and innovation were a big focus today, it was great to see everyone get behind a local NRL bid by signing a letter of support to the Australian Rugby League Commission,” Mr Miles said.
“Having our own NRL team wouldn’t just be a great branding exercise for our region, it would bring an enormous economic uplift and be a great way to rally locals and cement a sense of community in the region.
“It’s also important as we work to put Moreton Bay Region on the map as a world-class sporting destination ahead of the 2032 Olympic bid.”
Mr Miles also reiterated the joint support for a Knowledge and Innovation Centre at the Mill site at Petrie.
“A Knowledge and Innovation Centre would help create new industries and education opportunities for generations to come,” Mr Miles said.
Mayor Peter Flannery said amid all the difficulties associated with coronavirus, this newfound unity and momentum was a truly positive outcome.
“It’s great to have such a close working relationship with the State and Federal Government, a real partnership, to already be kicking goals for Moreton Bay Region,” Mayor Flannery said.
Redcliffe Dolphins boss Tony Murphy says only an “unbelievable bid” could top theirs as the Australian Rugby League Commission officially welcomed expressions of interest to become the NRL’s 17th team.
Redcliffe are up against a combined Ipswich Jets-Brisbane Bombers bid and the centrally-based Brisbane Firehawks – backed by Easts Tigers – to become the state’s fourth team.
But, boasting an “NRL ready” facility and well-established leagues club and business model, Murphy says it’s a heartland that deserves a team of its own.
“I don’t worry about anybody else (other bids) I just worry about what we can do and I believe we’ve got the best bid,” the Redcliffe Leagues Club chief executive said.
“But if someone was to beat us it would be an unbelievable bid.
“We need to be successful from day one, we are a true rugby league club and we’re very successful in the Queensland cup – we’re the most successful team in the state league.
“We certainly know how to run a rugby league club.”
The Dolphins would host most of their fixtures at Suncorp Stadium with a handful in Redcliffe’s Moreton Daily Stadium, while the Jets and Firehawks would play home games exclusively out of Suncorp Stadium.
The NRL and ARLC are confident they can display that with a decision expected as soon as next month.