Brothers' heart and soul is with city NRL bid
BROTHERS Ipswich have reaffirmed their support of the Western Corridor NRL bid despite a new national Brothers NRL bid entering the fray.
Brothers Leagues Club general manager Mark Hennelly said his organisation had come under no pressure to join the Brothers NRL bid and reinforced his organisation's close ties to the Western Corridor's bid.
"Our board, both our football club and leagues club and the juniors see the Western Corridor bid as the best thing for the corridor," he said.
"We've been actively involved in the planning and the submission, which is virtually ready to go.
"We are in Ipswich and that is where the majority of our players, members and staff are involved.
"While the Brothers confraternity bid is a good concept, that is what it is at the moment.
"We don't really know anything about it apart from what we've read in the papers."
Brothers will be the training base of the Western Corridor side.
"We are building some new fields here which are just about completed so we will we have four international fields fully flood-lit," Mr Hennelly said.
"The original plan is that for the first two years if the bid is successful, the NRL side would train here. Our commitment is that we would provide the training facilities which would include a gym."
The 20s side or second-tier Western Corridor team would be based at Brothers in an academy setup.
Ipswich Mayor Paul Pisasale, also the Western Corridor NRL bid chairman, said Brothers were a great supporter of Ipswich.
"They are part of a Brothers confraternity, but their heart and soul is with Ipswich," he said.
"No other Brothers club could be critical of the decision they have made.
"As a city we have a role to ensure that a player from Brothers or Swifts or any other club has a clear stepping stone to play for Australia.
"Having Brothers on board gives our bid more strength. We've also had Johnathan Thurston and anyone else that knows anything about rugby league saying that the NRL has got to go where the fish are bighting ... and that Ipswich and the Western Corridor is that bid. This is the fastest growing area in the country and the home of rugby league."