Rotorua to host NRL's Māori All Stars doubleheader

Source: 1News

Rotorua will be the first city outside of Australia to host the annual rugby league showdown between the Māori All Stars and the Indigenous All Stars when the teams roll into town next year.

 Nicho Hynes of the Indigenous All Stars and Kenny Bromwich of the Māori All Stars.

The Harvey Norman Rugby League All Stars event will feature both a men's and women's game.

The games will be played at Rotorua International Stadium, and while a date has not yet been announced, last year's event was held on February 12.

NRL chief executive Andrew Abdo is "excited" the game will played across the ditch for the first time.

"All Stars brings communities and culture together perhaps like no other week in our calendar. Knowing how important Rotorua is to Māori culture, we are excited to work with the community on becoming the first Aotearoa New Zealand location to host the event," Abdo said.

"The 2023 All Stars game will coincide with the 50-year anniversary of the first Indigenous rugby eeague tour of New Zealand, and will also be 50 years since Arthur Beetson became the first Indigenous athlete to captain Australia."

In that game, the Māori All Stars beat the Indigenous All Stars, while the women's game saw the opposite result.

Tickets will go on sale later this year.