Since our Bid formed in September 2010, we’ve maintained our one message – Brisbane needs a second NRL side.
Rugby League every weekend in the capital.
There are many benefits of a second team in Brisbane to square off against the Brisbane Broncos; a local-derby, commercial and corporate partnerships, growth of grassroots, member development…the list goes on and on.
During these four and a half years, we’ve had our bid on the sidelines of the NRL competition, watching the League ride its highs and lows. We’ve seen a betting scandal, players jailed, multiple drinking and dugs-related charges, the infamous Asada investigation, clubs face insolvency….again, the list goes on.
The phone has rung more times that I can remember with questions including relocation against a new licence being issued. ‘Would you take the Cronulla Sharks License if the NRL kicks them out?’ or “can you move the Titans to Brisbane and then call yourselves the South Queensland Bombers?” are the usual questions that come our way. It’s thought-provoking. Actually, it’s quite flattering. Our peers believe we’re ready for the NRL. We believe we are ready, but the answer has been the same over all the scandals and sagas. Brisbane needs its own second-team in the NRL. One without a history, without baggage and certainly not at the expense of contracting territories the League has worked so hard to build.
The current situation facing the Gold Coast Titans is dire. No sponsors, players being charged for criminal conduct, small crowds and low-members anticipated for Season 2015.
It’s a low right now.
Only four short years ago, just a month after our first Bid meeting, the Titans were playing the Roosters for a spot in the Grand Final in front of a crowd of 30,000 at Suncorp Stadium.
I’m sure in four years time, it’s a real possibility that it can happen for them again.
It’s a lesson for a club-in-waiting to stay sharp and not lose focus of the grand picture.
Excellence must be maintained.
In the meantime, you don’t move a team from Australia’s fifth-largest city because a couple of characters have personal desires that don’t line up with the core values of the Club and the NRL. Let’s set the bar higher than that.
We know that the profiles aren’t bigger than the game. For every bad egg doing something stupid, there’s 50 good ones doing the right thing. Theres 500 more waiting for a crack at the big show. Move the guys who can’t help themselves on and give them a hand to rehabilitate themselves, but not at the cost of the club, the NRL and the fans. Everyone deserves better than that.
Leave the Titans where they are. Give the club a chance to rebuild and reinvent itself. They’ll be back and doing what the Titans have done before – brought the best of our game to the Gold Coast.
The NRL has had a 107 year history of overcoming obstacles and being better for it.
Its happened before and it will happen again.
CEO – Brisbane Bombers NRL Expansion Bid