ABC Radio Australia has signed a three-year deal to broadcast coverage of the National Rugby League men’s and women’s competitions to audiences in PNG, Timor-Leste and across the Pacific.
Starting this week, ABC Radio Australia will broadcast ABC Grandstand’s live coverage of the NRL finals as well as the women’s competition – the NRLW – and the State of Origin series.
Head of International Strategy, David Hua, said the ABC was the only Australian radio broadcaster providing coverage of the NRL to a region that is passionate about the sport.
“NRL is PNG’s most popular sport and one of the leading sports across the Pacific,” he said. “Almost half of the current NRL players have Pacific Island heritage which means there is an incredibly high interest in the competition right across the region.”
The start of the NRL coverage coincides with the launch of a new ABC Radio Australia Pacific sports show Can You Be More Pacific, hosted by Fijian-Australian comedians Joseph ‘Roq’ Rokoqo and Ratu ‘Cav’ Cavuilati. The one-hour show will broadcast on ABC Radio Australia on Thursday evenings at 6.00pm PNG time.
Joseph ‘Roq’ Rokoqo loves sport, cooking shows and current affairs. Since arriving in Australia from Fiji at the age of 6, he’s been a follower of the St George Illawarra Dragons and follows the Auckland Blues in Rugby Super 14. His love of sport inspired him to start a boxing gym where he teaches boxing and general fitness to the next generation of sporting legends.
Ratu ‘Cav’ Cavuilati is a young aspiring actor who couldn’t crack a career in NRL. Originally from Fiji, Cav has made the most of the opportunities presented by life down under. His hobbies are romantic walks on the beach, drinking almond lattes and of course watching and talking about all things sport. Cav has a love/hate relationship with his beloved Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs. He one day hopes to become an actor.
Producer Renelle Mower is a Studio Producer for the ABC’s Grandstand NRL games coverage and Can You Be More Pacific. Renelle is also a passionate supporter of both the GWS Giants and the Sydney Swans and dreams of a double Sydney Grand Final. On an average weekend, you’ll find her attending, watching and/or listening to AFL, where she is often heard giving advice to the players and umpires.
Can You Be More Pacific is funded by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade through the PacificAus Sports program.