Panthers unveil Christchurch partnership
Panthers executive general manager Phil Gould has declared Christchurch the ideal partner city for the Panthers and the club's new home away from home in New Zealand.
Gould is currently visiting New Zealand's South Island to inspect AMI Stadium - the venue for the Panthers match against the Warriors in Round 10 this season.
The Panthers intend to build a long-term relationship with Christchurch and play an NRL fixture at AMI Stadium for at least the next four seasons.
"We want to build a New Zealand fan base in Christchurch and help to grow the game of rugby league in Canterbury," Gould said.
"Looking around the NRL teams over the years, it is obvious how much talent this region produces, and we hope that one day many of them will line up in Penrith colours."
Gould announced an extensive community programme for his players and coaching staff in May, which will include coaching sessions with clubs and schools, clinics for local coaches and a black-tie dinner.
While in Christchurch on Friday, Gould hosted a coaching clinic, filmed some local highlights to promote the game and met Christchurch Mayor Lianne Dalziel to personally thank her for the support of the city.
"This game could not happen without the support of the Christchurch City Council and the Christchurch International Airport, so we are extremely grateful they are backing this partnership," he said.
"I have visited Christchurch several times over the past few years and I have been impressed by the progress as it is becomes one of the most exciting cities in Australasia."