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Country rugby league supporters in Gunnedah will get the opportunity to see the 2005 NRL Premiers Wests Tigers in action in late January.
Wests Tigers will play a combined Group 4 representative side at Kitchener Park, Gunnedah, on Friday, January 27, at 7pm in their first game for 2006.
The match will give Wests Tigers players a chance to warm-up before the World Club Challenge against Super League champions Bradford Bulls at Galpharm Stadium, Huddersfield, on Friday, February 3.
Kevin Sheridan, President of Gunnedah Rugby League Football Club, said the community was excited about seeing the Wests Tigers up
close."This is a great opportunity for young bush footballers to match their talents against some of the best players in the NRL,'' Sheridan said.
With the Australia Day holiday on the Thursday prior to the match, Wests Tigers will also take part in the Australia Day celebrations in Gunnedah, giving the community a chance to meet the players beforehand.
Following the World Club Challenge match, Wests Tigers will play Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles in a trial at Brookvale Oval on Saturday, February 25, in their final hit-out before kicking off the NRL season against St George-Illawarra at Telstra Stadium on Friday, March 10.
Due to the World Club Challenge and the schedule of the trial against Manly, Wests Tigers will not play a charity shield match at Campbelltown Stadium in February.
On February 11, Balmain Ryde-Eastwood Tigers and Western Suburbs Magpies will both play Premier League trials against Parramatta at Campbelltown Stadium.
Balmain and Western Suburbs will also play each other in a lower grade Jersey Flegg (U20) trial.