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This week, our Ladies Who League blogger, Mary Kaye, reflects on a week in #eelsterritory and the Eels' clash with the Panthers. Remember you can find more of her work on!

For any of you that followed my adventures in Darwin you'll know that I had a fabulous time.

It reinforced to me once again, that despite Parramatta's position on the table, there are some things more important than football and that's what our players do off the field.

In the years that I have supported them, the Parramatta Eels have been consistently tremendous off the field and the visit to Darwin was been no different.

An excellent example is Luke Kelly – our very young halfback. Luke Kelly is from Katherine, so coming back to the Northern Territory was coming home for him. Last week, Luke absolutely revelled in the support he received from the community, he was open and embracing of fans and was essentially been a credit to the club and to himself. Luke is an example to the youngsters in the Northern Territory and a tremendous ambassador in the community.

Next is the group of players that were busy last week visiting over 30 schools in the NT. This work involved supporting elite athletes, hosting coaching courses and running skills and drills in primary and secondary schools. It was such a joy to see the photos of the NT community just enjoying the fact that the Parramatta Eels had made the trip up here.

Beau Champion is someone else I was very proud of last week. Beau was signed to the Parramatta Eels at the beginning of this season and unfortunately was injured in his first game back to the club. Not only did Beau go up to Darwin with the rest of the squad, but spent plenty of time in the community and at schools. Beau also visited junior rugby league clubs and the Northern Territory Institute of Sport. Beau was quoted celebrating his Indigenous culture and indicated that the community work he has been doing is something that he wants to stay involved with even when his NRL career is over.

Along with all this community work, the Eels have been in the NT and visiting fans (both young and old) who are just excited to have NRL in the NT. Special shout out to David Gower who gave me a hug when he saw me and Darcy Lussick who went fishing and only managed to catch a cold.

The Parramatta Eels commitment to growing the game of rugby league in the Northern Territory is something which I am extremely proud of. The partnership which the Eels have with the NT is in its 2nd year of a 4 year deal and I look forward to seeing the Eels continue to spread the Blue and Gold love up here.

Oh and wasn’t that win tremendous?

Acknowledgement of Country

Parramatta Eels respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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