There is nothing more important than family. On Thursday, 11 new faces were welcomed into the Titans family.
Every player that makes their debut for the Titans is celebrated with a special ceremony, welcoming them to their place in the club’s history.
The players from the Titans Physical Disabilities Rugby League team have been honoured in the same way, officially becoming Titans as they were presented with their jerseys ahead of Sunday’s exhibition game against a Gold Coast Legends Invitational team at Cbus Super Stadium.
The players received their jerseys from Titans Executive Chairman Dennis Watt, former Titan Clinton Toopi, and Lee Masters and Andy Baxter from Condev Construction – who have come on board as major sponsor of the Titans PDRL team through the company’s charity arm, Condev Cares.
Titans apparel partner Dynasty Sport has also thrown their support behind the Titans PDRL team by donating the playing kit for the squad to wear in their upcoming matches.
The presentation was followed by a training session including NRL stars Jarrod Wallace and Jai Arrow, and Pete Norman and Sammy-Jo Curtis from the Men’s and Women’s Titans NRL Touch Premiership teams.
PDRL team captain Terry Litton said being embraced by the Titans as a club meant as much to the players as anything that would happen on the field.
“It is great to be acknowledged by such a good club like the Titans,” he said. “They have helped us and embraced us and brought us into their family.
“It is just the little things like that (presentation) that mean so much.
“There are only about three of us in this team that have played rugby league before.
“We are trying to get them to experience all of rugby league. We want them to know about the past players, the history of the game, and to be rugby league people.
“To be playing against some of our idols is incredible. I myself have looked up to Preston Campbell – even though I am older than him. He is a credit to everything he does. And the same with all the other boys. For them to be involved in this is just fantastic.”
Watt paid tribute to the Titans staff, headed by Community and Game Development Manager Renee Cohen and PDRL Team Manager Callum Mitchener, who have driven the growth of the team.
Watt said the commitment and dedication of everyone involved in getting the Titans PDRL team onto the field was a reminder of how good rugby league can be.
“Rugby league is a tough game,” Watt said. “It takes great courage to cross that white line. It is even more courageous when you have come from backgrounds like these guys here, who have had to overcome enormous disadvantages to pull on those Titans colours.
“I promise you they will wear them with pride and distinction come 11.25am on Sunday (playing) against some favourite sons of this club.
“We want to thank Condev Constructions, who have a big-hearted charity arm called Condev Cares, who are represented here today by Andy and Lee.
“They are a big-hearted company. They build buildings, they build people and they build communities.
“They have facilitated what has happened here today. They have made it possible for these guys to live their dream – to pull on those Titans colours, and represent us with pride.
“There is a lot to be grateful for here. We are an inclusive club, and rugby league doesn’t leave anyone behind.
“Rugby League looks after its own, and these are our people, our colleagues, our players.”
The Titans PDRL game will kick-off at 11:25am on Sunday, as a curtain-raiser to the NRL Touch Premiership match and the NRL Premiership match between the Titans and Newcastle Knights at Cbus Super Stadium.