The Gold Coast has secured yet another major sporting event, with the NFL set to host their first ever international draft on the coast later this year.
Dubbed the Gold Coast International Combine, organisers say the event is designed to “unearth international gridiron talent”.
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It will see scouts from NFL teams come to the city to assess about 75 athletes from across Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, Samoa and Tonga on October 6.
Tourism Industry Development Minister Kate Jones said a 30-minute television package showcasing the Gold Coast and the combine will be produced and shown across prime-time television in the US, promoting our humble little city.
“The NFL is a huge sporting organisation with millions of fans right across the world and this International Combine will ensure the eyes of the sporting world are once again on the Gold Coast,” she said.
It’s understood up to five athletes from across Australia and the Pacific will be selected from the Gold Coast International Combine and entered into the NFL International Pathway Program, which could see them either enter the NFL draft or be placed directly onto an NFL team!
Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate said he looks forward to seeing some more Aussie talent follow in the footsteps of former rugby league player Jordan Mailata, who was picked up by the Philadelphia Eagles during the 2018 NFL draft in Texas.
“As a nation, we’ve enjoyed seeing Aussies make the NFL over the years and I hope this draft results in more talent from Down Under enter into the NFL,” Mayor Tate said.
It’s not yet been revealed exactly where the draft will take place.