Club donation helped students to school rugby success

Posted on Tuesday, 9 August 2022

A $4,500 donation from Canterbury League Club went towards getting Sir Joseph Banks High School’s Under-14 rugby league team to West Wyalong to compete in the prestigious Buckley Shield.

The school has been involved in the competition for over 10 years but this year was the first time that they have progressed to the final round of 16 of the competition.

“Sir Joseph Banks High School is not traditionally a sports-focused school – we don’t even have a rugby league program so this makes this achievement even greater,” said Khalil Kouayder, teacher and the team’s coordinator at Sir Joseph Banks High School.

To participate in round of 16, the team had to make the 5-hour journey to West Wyalong but faced difficulties raising funds to cover the trip. Canterbury helped cover the cost of travel and accommodation so that the team didn’t have to miss out on the opportunity.

“Sir Joseph Banks HS is a low socio-economic school and we only found out about having to travel to West Wyalong the Friday before the match. This is too short of a notice for our students and their family to come up with the money to fund this trip,” said Khalil.

The team successfully defeated West Wyalong High 30-26 in a tense, nail-biting match and have progressed onto the quarter finals against Kiama High School.

After tasting sweet success, the students received another bonus by getting to meet Bulldogs players Joe Stimson, Reece Hoffman, Corey Allan and Braidon Burns who were around to congratulate them, answer questions and have a chat at a private dinner event at Canterbury.

“The boys couldn’t believe their eyes as the players walked in; they were shell-shocked,” said Khalil.

“This trip wouldn’t be possible without the support of the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs and Canterbury League Club. The boys were over the moon with their victory and are excited to progress to the next round.”

“Congratulations to the team from Sir Joseph Banks on making the Finals of the Buckley Shield and demonstrating great resilience and sportsmanship – who knows we might see some of them as future Bulldogs players!” said Peter Winchester, Chairman of Canterbury League Club.