In its biggest single financial sponsorship by sporting code ever, Wests Group Macarthur has given $330,000 to support rugby league in the region.

The money donated via the ClubGRANTS scheme will benefit 23 Clubs from Campbelltown to Wingecarribee comprising 447 teams and over 7,115 players under a major partnership agreement in support of one powerhouse competition under New South Wales Rugby League to include Wests Tigers Macarthur Junior Rugby League and Group 6 Rugby League for the upcoming 2022 season.

“Wests is thrilled to partner with New South Wales Rugby League in a deal that strongly reconnects and reignites Wests Group long-running and historical association to the rugby league community in Macarthur,” said Alan Buxton, Chairman of Wests Group Macarthur.

Funding will be used toward encouraging local sport and positive rugby league pathways including player development programs, insurances, gala days, fees, uniforms, marketing and promotion, and volunteer development.

“This is an exciting partnership for Rugby League in the southwest and it will help cement our commitment to past, present, and future players of the game in the region,” NSW Rugby League CEO David Trodden said.

The region has a great track record of producing Rugby League talent, including Tedesco (Camden Rams) from Group 6, David Nofoaluma (Campbelltown Warriors), and True Blues Ryan Hoffman (Campbelltown Collegians), and Anthony Minichiello (East Valley United) from Macarthur. 

“The Macarthur and Group 6 region is one of the fastest-growing areas for participation in NSW and this deal will solidify the pathways for players looking to pursue a professional Rugby League career,” Mr Trodden said.

Following recent constitutional and organisational changes, New South Wales Rugby League will govern and act as operational body for Group 6 and Wests Tigers Macarthur JRL in the Macarthur region.

It is intended this structure will lead to growth and development of rugby league through Macarthur Clubs in the coming years and therefore opportunity for local players. 

At the heart of Western Suburbs League Club, the flagship venue in Wests Group portfolio, is a historic connection with Rugby League and the Group 6 Rugby League competition – with the club originally built to support Campbelltown’s oldest rugby league team, the Campbelltown City Kangaroos with origins back to 1908. 

“Wests Group Macarthur have been on the journey with us for many years with their gracious support to our community and I believe the new combined Macarthur conference is the best step for all stakeholders,” said Daniel Draper, Chairman of the Wests Tigers JRL Board.

Chairman of the Group 6 Junior Rugby League, Mark Dooner adds, “The Macarthur Conference competition will allow more efficient competitions for players of varying ability which will provide better opportunity for recruitment and retention of current players. The partnership with Wests Group Macarthur plays a huge role providing a successful Conference competition in the Macarthur Region.”

The partnership was officially launched at Wests League Club with Brydens Lawyers, NSW Blues coach Brad Fittler and NSW Rugby League CEO David Trodden presented with a cheque by Wests Group Macarthur.