Thursday, November 2, 2023
Mackay and Whitsunday Life
In an exciting development, the Mackay Cutters have secured a significant two-year affiliate club agreement with the North Queensland Cowboys. This partnership is set to bolster the pathway from Hostplus Cup and BMD competitions to the coveted NRL and NRLW, providing our region's budding talents with a clear route to the top.
This agreement will see half of the Cowboys NRL squad allocated to the Cutters, with players not selected to play NRL will be eligible to play for the Cutters.
Cutters Head Coach Michael Comerford and his staff will visit The Hutchinson Builders Centre to shadow Todd Payten and his coaching staff in the pre-season and will receive ongoing coach and high-performance staff development opportunities.
The Cutters will also play one home game at Queensland Country Bank Stadium as a curtain raiser to a Cowboys NRL game.
“The Cutters have been professional and positive throughout this entire process and their focus has never wavered from achieving an outcome in the best interests of both clubs,” Cowboys CEO Jeff Reibel said.
“We are two organisations who pride ourselves on developing and nurturing local talent, which is why we are delighted to reach this agreement.”
Cowboys General Manager of Football Micheal Luck said Mackay has been a crucially important region to the Cowboys during the club’s existence.
“Mackay is a rich rugby league region with a proud history and we are thrilled to continue our partnership with the Cutters,” he said.
“The players who come to the Cowboys from the Mackay region have historically and importantly been good people on top of being talented players.
“Our system is filled with talent from the Mackay region, from Reuben Cotter and Tom Dearden at NRL level, through to two of our most exciting juniors in Jaxon Purdue and Xavier Kerrisk as well as Emma Manzelmann and Jasmine Peters at NRLW level.”
Mackay Cutters CEO Mitch Cook spoke of his appreciation for the pathway this agreement creates for locals, stating “We are excited to continue our affiliation with the North Queensland Toyota Cowboys, which has been a long-standing partnership since 2008.
“We look forward to welcoming back Cowboys allocated players next season and are appreciative of the pathway this affiliation provides our region."
Cowboys CEO Jeff Reibel and Mackay Cutters CEO Mitch Cook. Photo supplied: Mackay Cutters