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Design & Development

Tigers unveil stadium, launch NRL bid

Featured image credit: Brisbane Tigers

Brisbane Tigers have opened their new Totally Workwear Stadium, using today’s (Wednesday’s) ceremony to announce their intention to pursue the 18th club licence in the National Rugby League (NRL).

One of the oldest clubs in Australian rugby league, the Tigers believe that the new A$10m (£5.34m/€6.15m/$6.66m) stadium at its existing Langlands Park home can serve as the foundation of the effort to become Queensland’s fifth NRL team.

Stage One construction on Totally Workwear Stadium is now complete, with the venue featuring new gender-inclusive change rooms, a boardroom, corporate suites and boxes, media room, medical room and meeting rooms that are available for use by Tigers sponsors, partners and community groups.

Stage Two will begin later this year and provide additional seating and the relocation of heritage buildings, such as the original 1933 grandstand. Stage Three, planned for 2024, adds more seating, a commercial gymnasium and accommodation for rehabilitation facilities.

“The change rooms and gymnasium are female-participant compliant and will encourage more women to play rugby league, providing more inclusive pathways to our BMD Premiership team,” said Brisbane Tigers CEO, Brian Torpy.

“NRLW also will play at least three games at Totally Workwear Stadium during the 2023 season, including the Round Four double-header featuring the Broncos, Eels, Cowboys and Wests Tigers. Langlands Park has been our home for more than 70 years and will be one of Australia’s best boutique, gender-inclusive rugby league stadiums available to our community.

“Totally Workwear Stadium is regularly used by NRL teams for training when playing in Brisbane, such as the recent Magic Round, as well as Queensland Maroons and Australian Kangaroos, and will now provide an even better facility for Queensland rugby league matches.

“Our NRL bid will leverage our great club’s 90-year-old history of legendary players and coaches, premierships and Queensland spirit to become the go-to team of Queensland’s fastest growing region.”

The Tigers intend to utilise Suncorp Stadium as their main venue should they secure an NRL franchise. The club lost out in their previous guise as the Easts Tigers in the League’s most recent expansion process.

The NRL Premiership expanded to 17 teams for the 2023 season after the Australian Rugby League Commission approved the grant of a new licence to the Dolphins in October 2021.

The Queensland-based team fended off competition from the Firehawks (Easts Tigers) and Jets (Ipswich) to become the NRL’s second Brisbane club. The announcement marked the first time the NRL had expanded since 2007, when the Gold Coast Titans were admitted to the League.

The Tigers bid has A$25m in cash reserves and a net-asset base in excess of A$57m, according to Fox Sports. However, a Pasifika franchise based out of Cairns, set to have significant funding from the Australian Government, is currently believed to be the favourite to become the 18th NRL team.

Brisbane Tigers NRL bid chairman, Shane Edwards, said: “Southeast Queensland fans are craving more high-quality rugby league, with our four existing Queensland based teams still leaving our fans wanting more.

“Suncorp Stadium has the capacity to support another NRL team. This year’s 27 rounds of the regular season will see nine weekends where no game is played at Lang Park. With the strong attendance and audience figures we are seeing the Dolphins achieve in their debut year, we believe the Brisbane Tigers can provide a similar stimulus in the southwest corridor that takes in the Logan and Ipswich regions.

“We will build upon our programs that already empower Queensland grassroots footy clubs and thousands of local players to dream big, and offer unique fan experiences with the game we love.

“If successful in becoming the 18th NRL team, our goal is to be the go-to club for sports fans on Brisbane’s southside and western corridor and the millions of casual fans between the ages of 18 to 34 who do not currently support the Broncos, Dolphins or Titans.”