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Goroka National Park in the Papua New Guinea Eastern Highlands will play host to the inaugural Gahuku League Nines that kicks off later today.

The latest addition to the growing number of Rugby League Nines tournaments taking place in the Papua New Guinea offseason, the Gahuku Nines will feature 12 teams from across the region, with matches to be played over three days.

Tournament director Ritchie Gotaha told The National yesterday that the three-day tournament would be the first of its kind for the league which is understood to be one of the oldest in Highlands.

“This is the first nines tournament for the league” Gotaha said.

“The purpose of the tournament is to help restore the league’s standards.”

“The standard of the league as dropped in recent years and we want to use this tournament to recapture the spirit of Gahuku.”

He said the organisers of the tournament were working towards making the tournament an annual event with the league’s thirteen-a-side competition set to kick off in the coming weeks.

Group A:

Matus Stars
Kotuni Trouts
Zogi Raiders
5 Mile Spartans
Kavere Raindrops
Zogi Gihila

Group B:
Eastern Suburbs
Nagamiufa Dolphins
Gouloka Nokotis
Railway Badgers
Gahuku Neta
6 Mile Hawks