Mackay Cutters' Kyle Laybutt in action. The Bundy boy could be playing at home if Wide Bay had a team in the Intrust Super Cup.
Mackay Cutters' Kyle Laybutt in action. The Bundy boy could be playing at home if Wide Bay had a team in the Intrust Super Cup. Daniel McKenzie

We need a state team for our sponsors to support

OPINION: "I think it needs the community to get behind it as well as the rugby league people in town. The clubs and everyone else to support it. We're keen to listen.”

Queensland Rugby League management director Robert Moore says they are open to having an Intrust Super Cup or Auswide Bank Mal Meninga Cup under-18 side in the Wide Bay but the area needs to be serious about it.

Last week's Auswide Bank announcement of the business supporting the QRL through the under-18 competition and the Maroons was fantastic for the region.

It puts the business to the world and provides them with a larger profile

But it also made me sad they don't have a state team here they could also support.

The money that they and Bundaberg Rum provide, another iconic business from the region, could help fund not only an Intrust Super Cup side in Wide Bay but also one in the Mal Meninga Cup.

Our best players in the region that want to challenge themselves at higher levels can't do it here in under-18, under-20 or senior level.

They have to go to Brisbane, Sunshine Coast or Rockhampton.

This has happened for the past 22 years since the Bundaberg Grizzlies represented the region in seniors and up until last year for the Mal Meninga Cup.

The Central Crows used to represent our region but they were removed from the Cup this year after the competition got restructured following the removal of the national under-20 NRL competition.

Our area is neglected with Wide Bay the only major area not covered and it is time plans were put in place to solve it.

The Bundaberg Rugby League, businesses in Bundaberg and Wide Bay, and all rugby league clubs need to come together to put plans in place to create a Wide Bay side.

Bundaberg and Wide Bay has and will continue to produce players that will play at the top level in the future.

It was ignored at the BRL annual general meeting and not even contemplated, which was sad.

Having a club here would provide players with the opportunity to stay close to home rather than move.

If our major businesses can sponsor major teams and competitions the time has come to put their money back into our community that helped get them to where they are.

While they do a fantastic job already in the sporting community with the support to competitions more can always be done.

Working together, with other sponsors, and the Bundaberg Rugby League could provide something that every young league player can aspire to.

Our own club to compete at the state level and a chance to produce more players for Queensland or Australia.

And that is what everyone wants to see surely.