2011 Charity Shield launched

The South Sydney Rabbitohs and St George Illawarra Dragons have launched the 2011 Charity Shield at ANZ Stadium today in what will be a bumper weekend of pre-season Rugby League action in February.<br><br>The 28th Charity Shield will be played on Sunday 13 February at 7pm at ANZ Stadium, the culmination of a big weekend of football with the NRL All Stars game being played the night before on the Gold Coast.<br><br>The Rabbitohs will be looking to take home the Charity Shield for the fourth consecutive year with a win in the feature pre-season club match on the NRL calendar.<br><br>The 28th Charity Shield will recognise the third anniversary of former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s speech apologising to the stolen generations. In conjunction with the NRL All Stars match, the Rabbitohs, Dragons and the NRL will highlight the importance of indigenous people to the game of Rugby League and to the nation. Members and families of the stolen generation will be invited to the game to help Rugby League celebrate the third anniversary of this key event in Australian history.<br><br>South Sydney Head Coach John Lang was joined by captain Roy Asotasi and new Rabbitohs recruit Greg Inglis in launching the 28th Charity Shield today. The Rabbitohs were joined by St George Illawarra’s Assistant Coach Steve Price, and players Mark Gasnier and Jason Nightingale at the launch, on the day prior to tickets going on sale to the general public.<br><br>This year, Rabbitohs’ proceeds from the Charity Shield will support Souths Cares and their community programs such as the Teachers Aide program amongst schools in the South Sydney region and the Workplace Mentoring program conducted in Sydney and the Coffs Harbour region.<br><br>The Charity Shield crowd record for ANZ Stadium was broken last year when 27,221 Members and supporters came to South Sydney’s home ground to see the Rabbitohs take home the title for the third year in a row.<br><br>“We always look forward to the Charity Shield and this year it takes on greater significance with us testing ourselves against the reigning premiers,” Lang said.<br><br>“The Dragons are the benchmark and we have the luxury of playing them on our home ground, in their first visit to ANZ Stadium since winning last year’s title.<br><br>“We’ll be fielding a strong team and testing out a few combinations so it will be a great game for our Members and supporters to attend and see how we’re looking heading into round one against the Roosters.”<br><br>Captain Roy Asotasi says the Charity Shield feels like the start of the season.<br><br>“This will be my fifth Charity Shield match and I’m really looking forward to the hit out,” Asotasi said.<br><br>“It’s always a tough game and this year we get to take on the premiers. It’s the best game to test ourselves ahead of round one and you really feel like your season begins with this game.<br><br>“Anyone who is craving some live Rugby League should get to this game and get behind the teams, as well as the charities that both Clubs are supporting.”<br><br>Greg Inglis says even though he will not be available to play in the fixture, it is an important game on the Rugby League calendar and one he is looking forward to.<br><br>“Away from the game itself, it’s a significant event because it recognises the contribution of Indigenous Australians to the game and also Kevin Rudd’s apology to the stolen generations three years ago,” Inglis said.<br><br>“Combining that with the celebrations at the All Stars game the night before, it shows that Rugby League, and especially South Sydney, are serious about making a difference in Indigenous communities.<br><br>“To highlight this anniversary over a whole weekend on the Gold Coast and here at ANZ Stadium is a great thing for Indigenous people, Rugby League and the whole community in general.<br><br>“I’m proud to be a part of it with the Rabbitohs.”<br><br>Tickets for the 2011 Charity Shield are on sale to the general public tomorrow (Thursday) from Ticketek. To purchase tickets from Ticketek you can do so online by visiting <a href="http://www.ticketek.com.au">www.ticketek.com.au</a>, on the phone by calling 132 849, or by visiting any Ticketek agency.<br><br>Ticket prices are as follows:<br><br>Category 1 Reserved:<br><br>Adult - $35 Concession or Student - $25 Junior - $15 (4-16 years) Family - $75 (2 adults + 2 juniors OR 1 adult + 3 juniors)<br><br>Category 2 General Admission<br><br>Adult - $25 Concession or Student - $15 Junior - $10 (4-16 years) Family - $55 (2 adults + 2 juniors OR 1 adult + 3 juniors)<br><br>Rabbitohs Members ticket prices as follows:<br><br>Ticketed Members get FREE ENTRY!<br><br>Adult - $30 Concession or Student - $20 Junior - $15 (4-16 years) Family - $65 (2 adults + 2 juniors OR 1 adult + 3 juniors)<br><br>Category 2 General Admission<br><br>Adult - $20 Concession or Student - $15 Junior - $10 (4-16 years) Family - $55 (2 adults + 2 juniors OR 1 adult + 3 juniors)