Benny calls for league action

AUSTRALIAN Legends captain Ben Elias says the National Rugby League needs to shore up a presence in Central Queensland before other sporting codes beat them to the punch.

Elias, who was never a favourite with Queensland crowds during a stellar State of Origin career with New South Wales, enjoyed being cheered on by the Gladstone crowd ? something he would not have experienced too often on this side of the border. The CQ area seems to have won over the former Balmain hooker who has a major investment in Rockhampton.

'(NRL chairman) David Gallop should be singing the praises of rugby league in Central Queensland,' Elias said after Saturday night's encounter with the New Zealand Legends.

'You're looking at the area between the (Brisbane) Broncos and the (North Queensland) Cowboys and the place is hungry for more rugby league,' Elias said.

'The battlegrounds are drawn and we need to win against soccer and AFL because Central Queensland people are passionate for top class sport as indicated here tonight.

'If (the NRL) people are fair dinkum they'll invest time and energy into the area because they've already got the product ? rugby league.'

'It's time to throw the dice big time because CQ is one of the fastest growing areas in the country with people relocating from Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne.

'This place is really going places.'

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