Border Bushrangers’ new ringleader for the New Year
RUGBY LEAGUE: Stanthorpe's Peter Brannigan has been named head coach for the Border Bushrangers Under 18s team set to compete in the 2016 Toowoomba Rugby league competition.
Brannigan brings more that seven years of junior coaching experience from competitions in Stanthorpe and Brisbane.
He will be joined by Queensland Rugby League operations manager Michael Jensen as interim manager of the team.
Brannigan said he was eager to meet players from across the Border Rugby League area.
"It is an honour to be the head coach for the U18s in 2016. I am looking forward to the challenge and meeting with all of the players to discuss my plans for 2016," he said.
"This year will be a great opportunity for all under 18 players in the region to play locally against players of their own age and hopefully develop and move into their senior clubs in their respective towns."
Players and parents from the Border Rugby League area will have a chance to meet the new coach and manager at information sessions over the next few weeks.
The new team will play in a 22-round competition and will host 11 home games either on Border Rugby League or Warwick and District Junior Rugby League game days across the region.
Jensen said they were still deciding where home games would be played.
"The intention is to share the home games around as much as possible but it will be dependant on travel for the players," he said.
"Most of the players will train at their respective clubs so we will introduce a mentoring program with representatives from each club to ensure the success of the initiative.
"Peter is really keen to give the boys the chance to play at the best level they can."
Jensen said the Border Rugby League clubs had expressed their support.
"All the club's are 110 per cent behind the initiative," he said.
"The real benefit is that the boys can stay in their own town, play in their region and support their senior teams once they finish playing under 18s."
Border Rugby League chairman Norm Crisp encouraged players and parents to attend the information sessions to discuss the upcoming season.
"The commencement of this under 18s team is an exciting new development for our region and the BRL in 2016," he said.
"However, it will only succeed with the support and involvement of under 18 players in our area."
Meet the coach
Stanthorpe: Sullivan Oval, December 20, 10am
Wallangarra: Wallangarra Recreation Reserve, December 20, 2pm
Tenterfield: Rugby League Park, December 20, 4.15pm (AEDST)
Killarney: Charlie Andrews Oval, January 9, 1pm
Millmerran: Millmerran Football Grounds, January 9, 4pm
Inglewood: MacIntyre Sports Complex, January 9, 6.30pm
Texas: Reg Saunders Oval, January 10, 11am