New South Wales Country Eagles

The New South Wales Country Eagles is an Australian rugby union football team competes in the National Rugby Championship (NRC). The team was founded by a group of patrons associated with country rugby in New South Wales. The Eagles team plays home matches in regional centres of New South Wales including Armidale, Goulburn, Orange, and Tamworth.[2]

New South Wales Country Eagles
NSW Country Eagles logo 2016.png
NSW Country Eagles
UnionNSW Country Rugby[1]
Founded2014
RegionNSW Regions, excl. Sydney & Southern NSW
Ground(s)(Dubbo) Caltex Park
(Port Macquarie) Regional Stadium
(Wollongong) WIN Stadium
Coach(es)Robert Taylor
Captain(s)Ned Hanigan
League(s)National Rugby Championship
20187th
1st kit
2nd kit
Sam Figg runs the ball against the Rams in 2016.

Name and coloursEdit

The Country Eagles are named for the wedge-tailed eagle, the largest bird of prey found in Australia. The team logo features a wedge-tailed eagle and, as the bird's feathers are mainly black with deep golden coloured highlights on the neck and wings, black and gold were adopted as the team's original colours.[3] The logo and mascot, “Wedgie”, were chosen in consultation with the NSW Country Rugby Union to differentiate the team from the existing Cockatoos representative side. The Eagles colours, however, remain similar to the traditional black and gold (amber) colours worn by NSW Country.[2]

SponsorshipEdit

Elders Limited formed a partnership with NSW Country Eagles in 2015, and has been the team's main front-of-jersey sponsor since 2016.[4] The major naming sponsor of the Country Eagles for the 2014 and 2015 seasons was Charles Sturt University (CSU).[5]

HistoryEdit

The ARU announced in December 2013 that the National Rugby Championship (NRC) would commence in 2014. Expressions of interest were open to all parties, with the accepted bids announced in early 2014.[6] A group of rugby patrons headed by businessmen Rick Hutchinson and Peter Tonkin (son of former Wallaby Arthur Tonkin)[7] founded the bid for a New South Wales Country team.[8][9] On 24 March 2014, it was announced that New South Wales Country would be in the new competition.[10]

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  2014–2015 NSW Country Eagles kit and logo.

The first general manager of the NSW Country Eagles, former Wallabies player James Grant, stated in 2014 that the team would be based in Sydney but travel to regional centres in New South Wales to play home games. Cities including Orange, Dubbo, Mudgee, Lismore, Tamworth, Moree, Armidale and Newcastle expressed an interest in staging matches.[9]

Originally it was thought that the NSW Country team for the NRC would be wholly composed of city-based players of country origin, but a goal of recruiting between four and eight players that were country-based was announced.[10] In the early years of the competition. Sydney clubs Easts and Randwick had a direct link as feeder clubs for the NSW Country team in the NRC.[3] Ahead of the 2016 season, the Sydney University club took a 25% stake in the team and provided many Eagles players from that season onwards.[11]

Darren Coleman was appointed as the first head coach of NSW Country team in 2014. Coleman had previously guided Japanese team Toyota Shokki to Top League promotion for the 2013–14 season.[12][13] Prior to that, he was also the assistant coach of the Central Coast Rays team which won the ARC in 2007.[14] Coleman continued as head coach through to 2018.[15][16][17]

GroundsEdit

Location of NSW Country's home venues for 2019

The NSW Country team plays its home matches in regional centres of New South Wales. In previous seasons, the team has also hosted some games in Sydney.[2] The team has its training base at the University of NSW in Sydney’s eastern suburbs, the same facitity used by the Waratahs.[1]

The team has scheduled home matches at the following locations:

City Venue Capacity
Home venues for the current season
Dubbo Caltex Park [18] 12,000
Port Macquarie Regional Stadium 10,000
Wollongong WIN Stadium 23,000
Home venues for previous seasons
Armidale Bellevue Oval 3,000
Bathurst Ann Ashwood Park 3,000
Camden Camden Rugby Park 3,000
Gosford Central Coast Stadium 20,059
Goulburn Simon Poidevin Oval 3,000
Lismore Oakes Oval [19] 10,000
Mudgee Glen Willow Stadium 10,000
Newcastle Sports Ground No. 2 5,000
Orange Wade Park [20] 8,000
Tamworth Chillingworth Oval 3,000
Scully Park 11,000
Magpies Rugby Park 3,000
Sydney Concord Oval 20,000
Coogee Oval [21] 5,000
University Oval No. 2 5,000
Woollahra Oval 5,000

Current squadEdit

The squad for the 2019 NRC season:

NSW Country squad – NRC 2019
Notes:
The initial squad was named in late August.[23] Players joining in subsequent rounds were:
  1. ^ a b c d e f Den Hoedt, Walker, Nowlan (Rd 1),[24] Ah Wong, Manuofetoa (Rd 2),[25] and Hall (Rd 3).[26]
  2. ^ a b Robertson and Tuala (Rd 4).[22]
 
Flanker Ned Hanigan.
 
Scrum-half Jake Gordon.

RecordsEdit

HonoursEdit

Season standingsEdit

National Rugby Championship

Year Pos Pld W D L F A +/- BP Pts   Play-offs
2018 7th 7 1 0 6 140 280 −140 2 6   Did not compete
2017 5th 8 4 1 3 219 217 +2 2 20   Did not compete
2016 1st 7 6 0 1 280 190 +90 4 28   Grand final loss to Perth Spirit by 20–16.
2015 5th 8 4 0 4 225 260 −35 3 19   Did not compete
2014 2nd 8 6 0 2 251 202 +49 3 27   Semi-final loss to Brisbane City by 26–32.

Head coachesEdit

CaptainsEdit

SquadsEdit

GalleryEdit

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b McKay, Brett (29 August 2019). "Return of the old Sydney jersey the final missing piece of the NRC puzzle". The Roar. Archived from the original on 29 August 2019.
  2. ^ a b c "NRC update part 2: NSW Country and the Sydney teams". The Roar. 9 July 2014. Archived from the original on 9 July 2014. Retrieved 9 July 2014.
  3. ^ a b "About Us". NSW Country Eagles. 2014. Archived from the original on 27 July 2014. Retrieved 11 August 2014.
  4. ^ "Sponsorships: New South Wales Country Eagles". Elders Rural. 2015. Archived from the original on 20 February 2017. Retrieved 1 September 2018.
  5. ^ "CSU supports NSW Country Eagles". Charles Sturt University. 12 August 2014. Archived from the original on 22 August 2014. Retrieved 23 August 2014.
  6. ^ "ARU unveils new domestic competition, a third tier of rugby". The Australian. News. 10 December 2013. Archived from the original on 3 July 2014. Retrieved 3 July 2014.
  7. ^ "Tonkin's dream turns to reality". The Daily Examiner. 30 April 2010. Archived from the original on 27 February 2019.
  8. ^ Adams, Hugh (15 August 2014). "NSW Country Eagles Preview". Green and Gold Rugby. Archived from the original on 15 August 2014. Retrieved 15 August 2014.
  9. ^ a b Findle, Matt (26 March 2014). "Country players to audition for National Rugby Championship side". Central Western Daily. Archived from the original on 12 May 2014. Retrieved 9 May 2014.
  10. ^ a b "Australian Rugby Union says National Rugby Championship to start in August". ABC. 24 March 2014. Archived from the original on 25 March 2014. Retrieved 9 May 2014.
  11. ^ McKay, Brett (16 November 2016). "Comment @ 2:31pm". The Roar. Archived from the original on 16 November 2016.
  12. ^ "Ashley-Cooper to stay in Australia". msn Sport. 22 March 2013. Archived from the original on 6 May 2014. Retrieved 5 May 2014.
  13. ^ "Toyota Shokki promoted, Sanix relegated". Rugby Redefined. 3 February 2013. Archived from the original on 6 May 2014. Retrieved 5 May 2014.
  14. ^ "Coleman to coach Brumbies Academy". Rugby Week. 19 September 2008. Archived from the original on 6 May 2014. Retrieved 5 May 2014.
  15. ^ "The Eagles haven't landed ... yet: Orange in fight to host NRC game". Central West Daily. 16 April 2015. Archived from the original on 31 July 2015. Retrieved 31 July 2015.
  16. ^ "Coaching staff announcement". NSW Country Eagles. 4 June 2016. Archived from the original on 19 July 2016. Retrieved 19 July 2016.
  17. ^ "NRC coaches for 2018 announced". NSW Waratahs. 10 August 2018. Archived from the original on 16 August 2018. Retrieved 16 August 2018.
  18. ^ "Apex Oval". Austadiums. 9 December 2010. Archived from the original on 29 March 2014. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  19. ^ "Oakes Oval". Austadiums. 25 January 2010. Archived from the original on 2 November 2012. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  20. ^ "Wade Park". Austadiums. 5 July 2007. Archived from the original on 15 July 2014. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  21. ^ "Coogee Oval". Austadiums. 22 March 2005. Archived from the original on 29 March 2014. Retrieved 15 July 2014.
  22. ^ "Brisbane City vs NSW Country Eagles". Rugby.com.au. Retrieved 20 September 2019.
  23. ^ "Sydney and Country confirm NRC squads". NSW Waratahs. 26 August 2019. Archived from the original on 26 August 2019.
  24. ^ "NRC Team Hub - Round One: All the teams, times and RUGBY.com.au stream details". Rugby.com.au. 29 August 2019.
  25. ^ "NRC Team Hub: All the lineups, kick-off times and broadcast info for round two". Rugby.com.au. 5 September 2019.
  26. ^ "NRC Team Hub: All the teams, kick-off times and broadcast info for round three". Rugby.com.au. 12 September 2019.
  27. ^ Payten, Iain (16 July 2019). "Sydney, NSW Country name coaches; Tahs may recruit Foley replacement". Rugby.com.au. Archived from the original on 16 July 2019.
  28. ^ "NRC captains welcome rule changes in 2019 tournament". rugby.com.au. 27 August 2019. Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  29. ^ "Why change a winning formula? The Country Eagles coaching staff and captain confirmed for 2017". NSW Country Eagles. 17 July 2017. Archived from the original on 17 July 2017. Retrieved 17 July 2017.
  30. ^ "Jono Lance and Will Miller named CSU Country Eagles captains". NSW Country Eagles. 19 August 2015. Archived from the original on 19 August 2015. Retrieved 19 August 2015.
  31. ^ "NSW Country Eagles team to play Greater Sydney Rams". NSW Country Rugby. 21 August 2014. Archived from the original on 22 August 2014. Retrieved 22 August 2014.
  32. ^ NSW COUNTRY EAGLES PLAYING SQUAD ANNOUNCEMENT
  33. ^ "CSU NSW Country Eagles announce 2015 NRC squad". NSW Country Eagles. 10 August 2015. Retrieved 19 August 2015.
  34. ^ "Meet the team". NSW Country Eagles. Archived from the original on 29 September 2018. Retrieved 19 August 2015.
  35. ^ "NSW Country Eagles announce NRC Squad for 2014". The Roar. 1 August 2014. Archived from the original on 1 August 2014. Retrieved 1 August 2014.
  36. ^ Qantas Wallabies player alignments unveiled for 2014 Buildcorp National Rugby Championship

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