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Monday, 13 February 2017
Page: 850

Ms CLAYDON (Newcastle) (16:19): I wish to pay tribute to the National Rugby League's All Stars program, which, following a week of terrific community events, culminated last Friday night in the Indigenous All Stars versus the World All Stars match in Newcastle. I was especially privileged to be there along with 20,000 other loyal rugby league fans in Newcastle. The Indigenous All Stars teams were particularly strong on the night, taking out both the men's and the women's matches. I think it significant to note that this is the first time that an All Stars fixture has been taken out of Queensland—a fact I enjoyed immensely—and played in an important regional centre like Newcastle. I thank the NRL for having faith in Newcastle and choosing our city to host such an important event.

I was absolutely thrilled that the NRL showcased the women's game before the men's fixture and that there was such a number of strong, local Aboriginal women taking part in that game. I particularly want to acknowledge the team captain, Bec Young, a Worimi woman from north of Newcastle; and the star centre, Caitlyn Moran. Both women, of course, are vital members of the Jillaroos squads as well. Again, I thank the NRL for staging such an important event and strongly urge the continuation of this tradition.

A division having been called in the House of Representatives—

Sitting suspended from 16:21 to 16:33