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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 7 Hansard (5 June) . . Page.. 1980..


MR SMYTH (continuing):

Whilst it was sad, none of those on the plane coming back were disappointed or dismayed that we had lost because they thought their team had played well on the night. We would like to acknowledge that, perhaps what you saw here on the television did not show how tough the game was. It was physical and unrelenting. The Brumbies really did perform very well against what could only be described as an enormous crowd of 39,000. I am not sure what the generic name for someone from Christchurch is, but the Crusaders supporters were very vocal.

We, who were there to support the Brumbies, were as vocal as we could be. After a season, when they went through a slump, they came back and made every game play. It was great to be there on the night they defended the cup. It was an outstanding effort on the part of all the Brumbies. It certainly was for those on this side of the house and, I am sure, for all members of the house.

I would like to acknowledge what tremendous sportsmen the Brumbies are, and what tremendous ambassadors they are for the people of Canberra. As we saw in this morning's Canberra Times, the outstanding effort they made was rewarded-with 10 Brumbies making the Australian side. I think that says that elite sport, or senior sport, here in the ACT has a very good reputation and a good future. More importantly, I think it says that junior sportsmen and women can aspire to those elite teams, the A-grade sides. Junior rugby especially has a great future in the ACT, because it consists of a number of teams. The Valley Vikings are doing well in the Brisbane competition. Each of those players can aspire to be a Brumby, to play for their city in the Super 12 and ultimately aspire to be in the Australian team.

I say, "Well done, Brumbies!" On the night, they played as well as they could have against what turned out to be a superior side. I can assure you that, when they scored that try and they came back and it was 14/13, the Crusaders supporters were numb at the very thought of losing-you could see the looks on their faces. Losing to the Brumbies, at home in Christchurch, was not something they were looking forward to. For a few minutes there, we all had a really good time. After that, unfortunately, the Crusaders got on top.

Well done to the Brumbies, well done to the Brumbies management-to people like Mark Sinderberry. Well done to the coach and to all those who helped. And well done to the players, who gave their all on the night. They are great ambassadors for Canberra.

Belconnen pool

MR STEFANIAK (5.55): I am glad to hear that my colleague went to the Brumbies. Unfortunately, I was at a 50th birthday party and had to keep checking on the scores at a club in your electorate, Mr Wood.

Mr Speaker, this is a subject I was loath to raise as a question a month or so ago, when I heard there might be some difficulties with this. This capital works project has had a rather tortuous history over about six years. That is an issue dear to your heart and mine-the Belconnen pool. I had high hopes, but a number of things went wrong over a period of time, starting with a competition policy complaint in January, 1998, just when we had money in capital works for project. Unfortunately, after that was sorted out, there


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