The HSBC Waratahs take on the Queensland Reds at Oakes Oval in Lismore on Saturday 23 January 2010, in a pre-season rugby union fixture presented by Southern Cross University.

It will be the third consecutive year the two sides have faced off against each other in the opening match of the season, with NSW setting up their campaigns with victories on both occasions.

With the two sides meeting again three weeks after the trial in round one of the Super 14, the match holds extra significance.

A number of events will be conducted in association with the historic fixture including curtain-raisers on Oakes Oval and the adjacent Crozier Field, as well as the ‘Dine with the Waratahs’ dinner on Friday 22 January.

Friday’s Captain’s Run final training session will be open to the public at Oakes Oval, while NSW players and coaches will also conduct a junior coaching clinic at Southern Cross University on the morning of the big game.

NSWRU chief executive officer Jim L’Estrange emphasised the importance of maximising the time spent in the region.

“When we get the opportunity to take the team to different places around the State, we make sure we take advantage of it,” said Mr L’Estrange.

“In recent years we have held open training sessions throughout Sydney, and have taken matches to Newcastle, Gosford, Wollongong, Campbelltown and Bathurst.

“The enthusiasm from Lismore City Council and Southern Cross University to bring top-line Rugby to the Far North Coast is perfectly in line with our aim to ensure as many people as possible across the State have the chance to see their team, the HSBC Waratahs, live.”

Mr L’Estrange said that while the clash with the Reds is a trial fixture, the significance of the match remains extremely high for players and coaches alike.

“You can’t underestimate the importance of these matches,” he said.

“The Super 14 is such an intense competition that you need to hit the ground running if you are to achieve success.

“The HSBC Waratahs have completed the last two pre-seasons undefeated which has been a great platform on which to start the season, and with three away games [Reds in Brisbane, Stormers in Cape Town, Bulls in Pretoria] to start 2010, these matches will hold extra importance.”

Tickets are on sale through Ticketek, starting at just $8 for juniors and $12 reserved seating for adults. Grandstand tickets are limited, and if available, will be more expensive for the game-day walk-up crowd.

Tickets to the Dine with the Waratahs Rugby Dinner are on sale through the Lismore Visitor Information Centre. Tickets are $90 per head. There is a discount for table-of-ten bookings.

Super 14 Trial presented by Southern Cross University

HSBC WARATAHS V QUEENSLAND REDS Saturday 23 January 2010Oakes Oval, Lismore

3:30pm Regional Academy Match

4:30pm Oakes Oval gates open

5:15pm Far North Coast v Gold Coast Breakers ‘A’

7:40pm HSBC Waratahs v Queensland Reds

Grandstand: Adult $16 (Game Day $20) Junior/Concession $10 (Game Day $12) Family (2 Adult, 2 Junior) $45 (Game Day $52)

General Admission: Adult $12 Junior/Concession $8 Family (2 Adult, 2 Junior) $35

Online: www.ticketek.com Phone: 132 849

DINE WITH THE WARATAHS RUGBY DINNER, Friday 22 January 2010, Union Building, Southern Cross University

MC: Greg Martin – Former Wallaby and Fox Sports commentator. Special Guests: Chris Hickey, HSBC Waratahs Coach & Ewen McKenzie, Queensland Reds Coach.

Tickets

$90 per person

$850 per table of ten (10)

Tickets on sale at Lismore Visitor Information Centre

Phone: 1300 369 795

Open 7 Days, 9:30am-4:30pm