The CA Technologies Brumbies advanced squad has returned to Darwin after visiting the communities of Gove and Jabiru on Tuesday.
Jerry Yanuyanutawa and Huia Edmonds made their way to Jabiru, while Rocky Elsom boarded a flight and ventured east to Gove.
Both groups took the trips to promote rugby to the people of the outback, helped along by local fans who were eager to see the game expand throughout Australia’s Top End.
About 300 children took part in coaching clinics throughout the day, with CA Technologies Brumbies players sharing their secrets with some of the Territory’s youngest fans.
But while the clinics went off without a hitch, the trips weren’t just about rugby.
Two of the CA Technologies Brumbies biggest art tragics, Yanuyanutawa and Edmonds were taken to see some of the world’s oldest rock art inside Kakadu National Park.
“I’ve never had the opportunity to see Aboriginal rock paintings before so today has really been very interesting,” Yanuyanutawa said.
“Growing up in Fiji, I’ve learned to appreciate the customs and traditions of my own land and of my ancestors so seeing the people of Kakadu and how important this art is to them has been great.
“It’s a bonus that we’ve been here to promote rugby – the Northern Territory is a fantastic place to visit and the kids we saw today certainly had the potential to play good quality rugby.”
Elsom, who visited Nhulunbuy High, Nhulunbuy Primary and Nhulunbuy Christian Schools, was also treated to a chartered fishing trip in the Gulf of Carpentaria, snagging a 20kg mackerel along the way.
But while the fishing was good fun, Elsom said he was equally impressed with the people of the Territory who made the towering flanker feel at home.
“We’ve had a fantastic time in Gove, getting into the schools and promoting rugby to these kids has been a rewarding experience,” Elsom said.
“The people have also been a pleasure to deal with – the group of guys that took us out on their boat were more than accommodating and were right into their rugby.
“Landing the mackerel yesterday afternoon was the icing on the cake for what was a great day in the Northern Territory.”