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Regional Challenge to christen renovated Newcastle International Hockey Centre

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Hockey NSW’s award-winning Regional Challenge will christen the newly-renovated Newcastle International Hockey Centre this weekend.

One-hundred teams from 11 regions throughout the state are scheduled to contest more than 450 matches – across six fields at the Broadmeadow facility – in a fantastic spectacle grassroots sport from Friday 25 to Sunday 27 February.

Approximately 3,000 players, officials and supporters will descend upon the Hunter for the largest single event on Hockey NSW’s calendar, generating an economic impact in excess of $2 million for the region.

“The Regional Challenge is our annual showpiece,” interim chief executive officer Craig Breed said.

“So, we’re excited to be bringing it to Newcastle for the very first time in its history.

“The event allows junior athletes to come together and play with their peers in a fun, non-competitive environment, while also getting the chance to put the skills they learnt in our Centre of Development program to use.

“Awards will be presented based on citizenship, teamwork and improvement.

“Furthermore, Hockey NSW is excited to partner with City of Newcastle and work with the local associations to deliver an event that not only produces a significant contribution to the local economy but continues to develop the sport in a region with an already-rich history.

“We’re looking forward to a weekend full of fun and camaraderie for our young players and we’re sure it’ll be one to remember.”

With the support of the Newcastle Men’s and Newcastle Districts Women’s hockey associations, City of Newcastle is the official naming rights partner of the Regional Challenge.

“We’re proud to be involved,” Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said.

“It’s one of the largest and most popular tournaments on the hockey calendar and is a testament to council’s ability to attract major sporting events thanks to its state-of-the-art facilities and amenities.

“We’re keen to welcome players, officials and supporters to our recently-upgraded Newcastle International Hockey Centre.

“City of Newcastle is delighted to back major sporting events like the Regional Challenge, too.

“And, we’re working hard to attract more to the area.”

All the action from the Regional Challenge will be covered on Hockey NSW’s website and social media pages.

Visit the Centre of Development webpage for more information about this year’s program.

The annual Hockey NSW Awards evening is also taking place in conjunction with the Regional Challenge at Rydges Newcastle on Saturday evening.

Games start from 8am each day.

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