ACT Brumbies to host trial match against Melbourne Rebels at Seiffert Oval

Star Brumbies player Henry Speight could soon be terrorising opposing wingers at Seiffert Oval. Photo: Sitthixay Ditthavong
Star Brumbies player Henry Speight could soon be terrorising opposing wingers at Seiffert Oval. Photo: Sitthixay Ditthavong

The ACT Brumbies are set to step into enemy territory with the Super Rugby club on the verge of finalising plans to play a game at the Canberra Raiders' spiritual home in Queanbeyan.

Fairfax Media understands the Brumbies could play a pre-season trial against the Melbourne Rebels at Seiffert Oval on February 3.

The Queanbeyan Council is also working on a proposal to have Canberra's two premier sporting teams play at Seiffert Oval in alternating years.

The Raiders started their professional rugby league life at Seiffert Oval in 1982 before shifting their base to Canberra Stadium at the end of 1989.

Queanbeyan junior Robbie Coleman faces an uncertain Super Rugby future waiting for a new contract to materialise. Photo: Rohan Thomson

Queanbeyan junior Robbie Coleman faces an uncertain Super Rugby future waiting for a new contract to materialise. Photo: Rohan Thomson

The Green Machine is keen to maintain a connection with its Queanbeyan roots and could consider shifting NRL games to Seiffert Oval pending major upgrades.

But the Brumbies are also keen to explore options of playing at the home of their cross-code rivals as they begin a new Super Rugby era under the guidance of coach Dan McKellar.

A spokesman for the Raiders welcomed the news saying top-level matches at the oval would only bring positive outcomes, including greater investment and more opportunities for professional matches.

Queanbeyan councillor Kenrick Winchester suggested in August he would push council to apply for funding from the $100 million Regional Sports Infrastructure Fund announced earlier this year by NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro.

Cr Winchester said the funding could go towards upgrading lights, media facilities and food and beverage outlets to get Seiffert Oval to a standard where professional games could be played.

Queanbeyan Mayor Tim Overall welcomed the Brumbies across the border and said it would provide a great boost to the town.

"This is a brilliant event for Queanbeyan and the Brumbies," Cr Overall said.

"I am looking forward to a packed Seiffert Oval for the trial match.

"Brumbies trial matches follow on from Raiders trials and vindicates our vision for Seiffert Oval - to secure grant funds to upgrade the facility to its former glory."

The Brumbies visit to Queanbeyan will be subject to a determination at a Queanbeyan-Palerang council meeting on October 11.

Queanbeyan has a long history of rugby union success with both the Brumbies and Wallabies, including Australian rugby great David Campese, Saia, Anthony and Colby Faingaa and Brumbies prop Les Leuluailii-Makin.

But one Queanbeyan junior is facing an uncertain Super Rugby future after the Western Force was axed from the competition.

Former Brumbies back Robbie Coleman is yet to finalise his future, but the 27-year-old has an existing ARU contract and could join a rival Australian team.

Injuries ruined Coleman's debut season with the Force, but he has been playing Super Rugby since 2011 and could be a valuable addition to the remaining four Australian teams.