True Blues member Joel Stockley and his wife Suzanne were the winners of this year’s member’s prize draw, rewarded with a trip to Brisbane to see the Blues play the Reds at Suncorp Stadium.
We caught up with Joel to hear his perspective on the trip and what insights he learned from the team.
“We spoke with the players and got a bit of insight from the players. What they’re trying to achieve is quite different from what you hear on the media,” he said. “The way they’re approaching their defence and the team’s effort to get back up and on the line, it’s so different from years past. And it’s really working.”
Joel and Suzanne met the players and coaching staff at team functions, stayed in the same hotel and were hosted with other Blues sponsors at Suncorp Stadium for the game.
The group of supporters were hosted by former Blues lock Anthony Boric (2006-2013, 72 caps), who also took Joel and sponsor representatives on a tour of XXXX Brewery Tours before the game.
Joel said one of the highlights was seeing how the players prepare for games and recover post-match, with this insight helped along by Anthony’s expertise.
“Throughout the weekend, Anthony was giving us hints and tips as to what the players were going through – it was fantastic.
While the game was tough to watch, Joel was impressed with how the team was able to step up under tough conditions – especially with most days sitting easily over 30 degrees C.
“It was like walking in to a sauna in Brisbane, I don’t know how the players can spend 80 minutes out on the field in that heat and humidity.
“The game was really good – we had great defence, it was just frustrating to watch the scrums from the team’s perspective.”
“I’d really like to thank the guys for taking us around. We got an amazing perspective and were made to feel right at home.”