Blues to bunker down for first of three Coffs camps
THE New South Wales Blues found a winning formula by training in Coffs Harbour last year and from next week will return for the first of three camps at Novotel Pacific Bay.
A two-year deal to keep the Blues in Coffs Harbour for this year's series and the 2016 State of Origin was inked before the start of the rugby league season.
Coach Laurie Daley and victorious captain Paul Gallen returned to Coffs Harbour earlier in the year to announce the plans, saying there was an overwhelming feeling that by being away from the distractions of Sydney, the team bonded and the Coffs Harbour experience contributed greatly to their first series win over Queensland in eight years.
The NSW Blues will be named at a luncheon at Sydney's Star Casino before the team flies into Coffs Harbour.
An official welcome will be staged in the city centre on Wednesday from 4.30pm.
The players will also take time out to speak with school students on Thursday at 2pm at Toormina Public School and Toormina High School before they'll take part in a coaching clinic for local Group 2 juniors at Coffs C.ex Stadium.
The Blues will then return to Coffs Harbour for the Origin 2 training camp after the first State of Origin match.
Turning a hue of blue
THE Harbour Dr mall in the city's centre is awash with blue ahead of the New South Wales Origin side's visit this week.
Lights throughout the mall have been changed to blue as the city gets behind the rugby league team once again.
The blue lights will remain for all three of the New South Wales Blues Origin camps.
Advocate chief photographer Trevor Veale captured this early morning shot of the blue lights reflected on the sails covering the mall.