Manly Sea Eagles Sammy Rodgers & Sam Brisby are set to appear on the NRL Rookie.
In a clandestine operation late-2015, six of Australia’s best Touch Football athletes quietly exited the country with a covert mission on their mind. Following instructions from TFA and with boots and passports packed, work leave approved and the GPS coordinates set to a remote Beach near Auckland, our intrepid Aussie reps were primed, programmed and ready to perform upon landing. Destination? The black sands of Piha Beach on the beautiful but wild, west coast of New Zealand. The mission? Take on to their knowledge an undisclosed team of potential NRL stars in a game of Beach Touch, all looking for a shot at an NRL contract and the big time. Status? Fast forward nine months and six of our Australian representatives will finally get to reveal their sublime skills on next week’s episode of the popular Channel Nine/GO production, ‘The NRL Rookie’.
Episode five of the popular 10-part series will be broadcast on Tuesday, 28 June 7.30pm and replayed throughout next week; tune in to see which team prevails. Does the superior fitness and strength of the NRL Rookies see them through? Or, is it the guile, speed and deception of the Touch stars that leaves the Rookies and the Piha Beach sands in their wake?
The TFA All Stars team features some of the best Touch Football talent ever assembled in a ‘Mixed’ format. The team demonstrates the distinct family connection, which embodies the social side and highlights the inclusive nature of the sport and strong participation numbers Australia-wide. And, serving further notice to the NRL Rookies is the fact that each of the Touch Football stars love the feel of sand between their toes: they all reside, cut their teeth and compete regularly near a beach traversing the East Coast of Australia.
Touch Football Australia and BLK Ambassadors Sam Brisby, Samantha Rodgers, husband and wife team of Dylan and Emily Hennessey, Peter Norman and Kylie Hilder all travelled to New Zealand late last year to film the segment. For those playing at home, The NRL Rookie is the new reality show on Channel Nine/Gem offering a guaranteed NRL contract to the lucky amateur player who can prove to the respective judges he has what it takes to perform at the highest level and secure a lucrative contract.
Australian Women’s Open representative, Samantha Rodgers and partner of the other Sam (Brisby, right), thoroughly enjoyed the experience. “It was so exciting to be a part of the series and being able to play the NRL boys in their Rookie quest and adventure,” Rodgers said. “It was a great experience to go over there and not only witness the program but also be a part of it; so that was pretty amazing,” she added. “I think it will be pretty funny – there will be some good highlights and some good Touch Footy on show. It was in the sand so it was pretty tough!”
You can watch The NRL Rookie at the following times and can also watch online at www.nrlrookie.com.
- Premiere – Tuesday (28 June) – GO! 7.30PM (SYD/MEL/BRIS)
- Encore 1 – Wednesday – CH9 10.30PM (SYD/BRIS)
- Encore 2 – Saturday – CH9 1PM (BRIS)
- Encore 3 – Sunday – CH9 2.30PM (SYD)
- Encore 4– Monday – GO! 11.30PM (SYD/MEL/BRIS/ADE/PER).