Craig Warhurst

Wondai takes an early lead

PRIOR to watching Queensland make history by pummelling New South Wales in a thrilling Origin clash Wednesday night, the future of rugby league was on display at Albert Park on Wednesday.

A full complement of 13 teams from the Gympie and Burnett regions converged on Albert Park to contest the Broncos Challenge.

The challenge itself is staged over two rounds for primary school children in grades five and six, with the second round scheduled for August to include finals.

Regions represented outside of Gympie included Murgon, Cherbourg, Wondai, Kilkivan and Rainbow Beach.

Teams played a total of five games each on Wednesday, with points being tallied to help establish team positions ahead of finals action in round two.

Gympie Devils rugby league player-coach Darren Burns said the day was a “complete success”.

“The day ran very well and the feedback from the schools was very positive,” he said.

Despite being one of the smaller schools, Wondai State Primary School took an early lead after its five games.

“Wondai is in front, but the rest of the ladder at this point is very tight,” Burns said.

“It's going to make for an interesting round two later in the year, and it's hard to pick a winner.”

The Broncos Challenge is part of an ongoing effort to enhance the profile of rugby league in regional centres, helping to produce the nation's next generation of young stars.