Visit of Melbourne Rebels and Rugby Victoria

Visit of Melbourne Rebels and Rugby Victoria

Officials from Melbourne Rebels and Rugby Victoria concluded a successful visit to Sri Lanka, to explore opportunities for cooperation in promoting Sri Lanka tourism in Australia, and in developing sports tourism through development of rugby in particular.

Melbourne Rebels CEO Baden Stephenson, Rugby Victoria President Neil Hay and Melbourne Rebels General Manager and ex-Wallaby Nick Stiles were in Sri Lanka from August 28 to 31. During the visit, they held successful meetings with Chief of Staff to the President Sagala Ratnayake, and with Chairman of Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau Chalaka Gajabahu, and other SLTPB officials.

The visit was coordinated by the Consulate General of Sri Lanka in Melbourne in collaboration with SLTPB, and was the result of meetings Melbourne Rebels and Rugby Victoria had with Minister of Tourism and Lands Harin Fernando during his recent tour of Australia. During those discussions, both sides expressed enthusiasm about cooperating to promote Sri Lanka in Australia through various activities, including sports exchanges, branding opportunities and rugby training and coaching camps.

During the meeting with SLTPB, both sides had fruitful discussions on future cooperation, including opportunities for bilateral tournaments, coach and player training and exchanges, Sri Lanka Tourism branding on Melbourne Rebels platforms.

The highlight of the visit was a tournament between the four main women’s national rugby teams on 29 August during which players from the Army, Navy, Air Force and CR&FC teams competed in a mini-tournament. After the conclusion of the tournament, Melbourne Rebels GM Nick Stiles announced the selection of two players to travel to Australia to train with the Rebels W women’s squad. The tournament was also followed by a half-day coaching camp for schoolchildren, led by Stephenson.

Consulate General of Sri Lanka


04 September 2023

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