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Bathurst to host 2024 Koori Knockout

Callan Morse -

Bathurst will host next year's Koori Knockout after reigning competition champions, Walgett Aboriginal Connection earned the rights to host the 2024 event.

The announcement confirms the Knockout's return to Bathurst for the first time in 13 years.

Speaking from Mount Panorama, Walgett Aboriginal Connection (WAC) player George Rose said it was an absolute honour to announce Bathurst as the host city of the Knockout.

"We're really excited to be coming here in what will be a great venue," Rose said.

Rose said tens of thousands of rugby league players and fans will converge on the regional city for the event.

"This is the largest rugby league knockout in the southern hemisphere," he said.

"It's the largest gathering of Aboriginal people. We'll have up to 30,000 people converge on Bathurst on the long weekend.

"It's a celebration of family community culture, and brilliant rugby league talent.

"It's a positive reason for us all to come together."

Rose said the Knockout provided a unique opportunity for Indigenous rugby players of all levels to compete against each other.

"There's no footy like knockout footy," Rose said.

"Having the NRL's best talent, playing alongside and against country legends, rising stars, and local footy legends."

"WAC is honoured to be the host of the 2024 Knockout and continue the tradition of the 51 great teams who have come before us, who have won and hosted the Knockout - an event that is run by us for us.

Bathurst was selected ahead of Dubbo and Wagga Wagga, who were also vying for hosting rights.

Walgett landed hosting rights to the 2024 event after defeating Wiradjuri Aboriginal Rivers 22-12 in the final of the 2023 Knockout.

The tournament heavyweights, who featured the likes of Ben Barba and Jack Wighton alongside numerous players with NRL experience ended a nine-year drought in their 10 point win over Wiradjuri.

The 2024 Koori Knockout will be held from October 4-7, 2024.

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