• Indigenous players celebrate after Chris Grevsmuhl (2nd left) scored a try during the Indigenous v NRL All Stars match at CBUS Stadium on the Gold Coast (AAP)Source: AAP
Our Indigenous All Stars will take on a World All Stars team in 2016, after the National Rugby League announced a revamp of the concept today in Brisbane.
By
Jodan Perry

4 Nov 2015 - 5:50 PM  UPDATED 4 Nov 2015 - 6:28 PM

TRANSCRIPT

Natalie Ahmat: Our Indigenous All Stars will take on a World All Stars team in 2016, after the National Rugby League announced a revamp of the concept today in Brisbane.

Our boys currently have the bragging rights in the clash, but will have to display all their deadly skills to topple what will be a formidable side.

Queensland Correspondent Jodan Perry was at the launch.

Jodan Perry: One of the biggest rugby league matches on the calendar for our mob is the annual All Stars clash, and next year the pride of Aboriginal Australia will be taking on the world.

The World All Stars side will be made of a minimum of footballers each from Australia, New Zealand and England, while the remaining teamates will be from - Fiji, Samoa, Tonga, PNG and France.

Todd Greenberg, NRL head of football: The Australian, New Zealand and England captains will be automatic selections for this team. Each NRL club will be respresented, the World All Stars team will include at least one player, and a maximum of two payers from each of our NRL clubs.

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Our boys currently have the edge over the All Stars in the five matches played, having won three. But inaugural player and driving force behind the concept, Preston Campbell, says the new innovation will give players from other cultures a sense of pride.

"With this World All Stars, with players coming from different countries, they'll feel like they have to lift to their heritage of culture"

Preston Campbell, World All Stars concept creator: To get countries involved is a great thing, I mean, in the past the Indigenous side always felt like they had a link to the jersey, and I think now with this World All Stars, with players coming from different countries, they'll feel like they have to lift to their heritage of culture.

Legendary coach Wayne Bennett will be at the helm of the world side, and he has always been an advocate for the concept.

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Wayne Bennett, World All Stars coach: It's about giving back, and that's what we are doing.

All these guys, I've said before, they are all mates, we play with them. They've been wonderful players in our game, and there's no greater player in our game than Johnathan Thurston right now, and everybody admires him greatly.

So I'm proud of the fact that the game wants to give back, and the players, I've never had a problem with a player wanting to play in the game.

The annual match means a lot to all our mob out there, and especially to Presto, with the concept giving both him and the wider community a strong sense of identity as Aboriginal people.

"The purpose of myself, like a lot of Indigenous people, is to give to each other, to share with each other"

Preston Campbell: It's beautiful, you know, I can't tell you how much I've learnt and how much more proud of a person I am about who I am, and where I come from. And I have a purpose, and the purpose of myself like a lot of Indigenous people, is to give to each other, to share with each other, and this is what this is all about.

Being so heavily invested in the concept, it's little suprise that sometimes his feet get a little itchy.

Preston Campbell: Oh some of the guys are a lot bigger than when I played. I got out at the right time. In saying that though, the interchange next year are going down, so it's gunna be a game for the smaller guys, but in saying that as well, I'm a little bit old now.

Jodan Perry for NITV News