Topics: Rugby League, NRL

Public gets the chance to rub shoulders with NRL Nines players

  • Auckland

Aotea Square is the place to be this Friday. The public will have the chance to mingle with more than 288 NRL players who will be in the country for the Downer NRL Auckland Nines Fan Day.

It'll will take place one day before the annual Nines Tournament kicks off at Eden Park on Waitangi Day.

Rugby League stars will take over Aotea Square from 10am to 4pm with a host of activities where fans can meet them, including signing sessions and selfies.

Onstage interviews will take place and a NRL members' lounge with exclusive access for members of all the NRL clubs who have travelled to Auckland for the event.

Rugby league legend Mal Meninga says events like the Fan Day and the Club Programme are important to the players.

“Whatever form of sport you play, you have to be in touch with the fans, with the community, with the kids who play the sport. Fan days are about the people who make the sport happen – they buy the tickets, put their bums on seats, bring the sport to life. It’s important to stay in touch with the fans.”

The Downer NRL Auckland Nines Fan Day will follow on from the Club Programme, on Thursday 4 February, when 16 local Auckland rugby league clubs will host visits from the 16 NRL teams. 

Auckland Tourism, Events and Economic Development (ATEED) Chief Executive Brett O’Riley says the Downer NRL Auckland Nines Fan Day and Club Programme are chances to give a warm Auckland welcome to the NRL players here for the tournament.

“This is the week for league fans. The NRL Auckland Nines is a home-grown event that provides a unique opportunity for supporters to see all 16 NRL teams in over one weekend. And whether you’re new to the game or a die-hard fan, the atmosphere is unrivalled.”

Duco Events Chief Executive Martin Snedden says part of the ongoing success of the NRL Auckland Nines is the excitement in the lead-up to the tournament.

“Auckland really turns it on for the NRL Auckland Nines. Events like the Fan Day create a buzz in the city, and New Zealand and overseas fans get to meet their rugby league heroes – along with some of the exciting new players who will emerge as key playmakers over the weekend.” 

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