North Bougainville’s inaugural rugby league nines tournament has been given a timely boost ahead of its January 27-29 kick-off.
The tournament was supported by Maruk Resources Investment as the main sponsor.
The three-day competition will be held at Hutjena Oval in Buka and will see the participation of men’s and women’s teams from all 14 constituencies in the district which include Tsitalato, Hagogohe, Halia, Haku, Selau, Suir, Peit, Tonsu, Mahari, Teua, Taonita -Tinputz, Taonita-Teop, Nissan and the Atolls.
As a naming rights sponsor, corporate sponsorship covers all cash prizes that will be awarded to winning teams in all divisions, individual athlete awards, athletic equipment and administrative support.
Announcing the sponsorship, Maruk Resources Investments Ltd managing director David Tupp said his company was delighted to support the organization of the inaugural North Bougainville Rugby League 9s tournament in Buka next month.
“At a time when Bougainville is working towards self-determination to one day realize our dream of independence, it is encouraging to see new youth development initiatives in all sectors of our communities.
“We often forget that young people make up an important segment of our population and providing opportunities well suited to their lifestyle preferences and developmental needs is integral to our development as a nation in the making.
“The North Bougainville Rugby League 9s builds positive community relationships and cooperation between our people.
And the timing of the tournament is perfect as it can be seen as a way to unite across rugby league and start the new year together as one community here in North Bougainville,” he said.
Tupp encouraged other companies and government entities to support the event as it would become an annual fixture in Bougainville and open new opportunities for the sports sector.
“Sport is a tool for the holistic development of young people and the benefits of sport should never be underestimated in Bougainville,” Tupp reiterated.
“Rugby league has done wonders for me as a Bougainvillea man, having grown up during the crisis. Like many others the league has brought us closer together, it has given us hope during the most chaotic part of our lives and it has strengthened the fraternity between our peers.
“The friendships created, moral and character development, goal setting, self-discipline, leadership skills acquired through rugby league remain strong to this day.
“I would like to see the youth of our communities have access to such opportunities for the betterment of North Bougainville.
“By creating cohesive pathways, bringing together the expertise gained in the rugby league code, fostering meaningful partnerships and providing the right pathways needed, we can hope to build on what we have now and see a sector flourishing sport in the not too distant future. “, said Tupp.