Toyota Cowboys co-captain Johnathan Thurston has helped the NRL kick off the 2014 Telstra Premiership Finals Series in spectacular style today, with the stars of the game coming together to “Light It Up”.
JT joined Anthony Minichiello, Jamie Lyon, John Sutton, Jamie Soward, Cooper Cronk, Michael Ennis and Corey Parker at today’s event, fresh from one of the most enthralling final rounds in the game's 106-year history.
The Panthers victory last night not only guaranteed the Broncos a position in the top 8, but also ensured that fans in Townsville, Sydney and Melbourne will have the opportunity to experience a Week 1 Finals Series game live.
NRL chief executive officer Dave Smith praised the efforts of the eight teams that have qualified for the finals, while encouraging members and fans of all teams to "light it up" for the finals.
“The season reached a thrilling climax over the weekend and judging by the match-ups for week one, the stage is set for that level of excitement to continue,” Mr Smith said.
“There are four big games in three cities this weekend ensuring members and fans across the eastern seaboard have the opportunity to experience a game live.
“I would like to thank players for their attendance today and wish every team and their supporters good luck for the Finals Series.”
Today’s event marked the unveiling of a new advertising campaign for the Final Series featuring an anthem by US pop sensation Fall Out Boy.
Titled “Light It Up”, the campaign will feature a series of 30-second television commercials, digital, press, radio and outdoor advertising encouraging fans to get out to a Final Series match and "light it up” for their team.
The campaign will be complemented by a free “Light It Up” app, giving fans access to Final Series creative assets and exclusive content according to which team they support in the Finals.
There will also be a range of new ticket offers and promotions aimed at enhancing fan experience while providing greater value for money.
Supporter bays at all grounds will feature a limited amount of “hot seats” which include supporter gear including a wig, clapper stick, flag and banner with any ticket purchase, so that fans can engage and become part of the action like never before.
NRL Telstra Premiership Finals Series
Week 1 schedule:
FRIDAY 12 SEPTEMBER
Manly Sea Eagles v South Sydney Rabbitohs
7.55pm, Allianz Stadium
SATURDAY 13 SEPTEMBER
Sydney Roosters v Penrith Panthers
5.50pm, Allianz Stadium
North Queensland Toyota Cowboys v Brisbane Broncos
7.55pm, 1300SMILES Stadium
SUNDAY 14 SEPTEMBER
Melbourne Storm v Canterbury Bulldogs
4.10pm, AAMI Park
For more information on the Finals Series, please go to nrl.com/finals.