The 2020 All Stars match will feature an Indigenous All Stars team going up against a Maori All Stars team at the Cbus Super Stadium on the Gold Coast. Check out our predictions and tips ahead of this game.
The All Stars match is a stand-alone game before the start of the National Rugby League season that features an Indigenous All Stars team teaming up against the Maori All Stars.
The 2020 instalment will take place at the Cbus Stadium on the Gold Coast in Queensland. This fixture has been in existence since 2010 with the Indigenous All Stars featuring in every game, while their opponents have changed over the years.
History of the All Stars Match
The first ever match involving the Indigenous All Stars took place at the Robina Stadium when they took on a special NRL All Stars line-up.
Both teams were packed with superstars with the Indigenous All Stars selecting the likes of Preston Campbell, Nathan Merritt, Wendell Sailor, Scott Prince, Jonathan Thurston, Sam Thaiday, Blake Ferguson, Jharal Yow Yeh and Greg Bird.
The NRL All Stars also took the first game very seriously. They included the likes of Jared Hayne, Israel Folau, Manu Vatuvei, Darren Lockyer, Benji Marshall, Cameron Smith, Sam Burgess and Luke O’Donnell in their starting XIII, while Anthony Tupou, Nate Myles, Robbie Farah and Brett Finch were named on the bench.
The first game was won by the Indigenous All Stars as they ran out 16-12 winners with Sailor, Ben Jones and Jamie Soward all crossing for tries. Thurston was the winner of the inaugural Preston Campbell Medal for being man of the match.
The NRL All Stars won the next two matches in 2011 and 2012, while the Indigenous All Stars levelled the series overall with a 32-6 hammering of the NRL All Stars at Lang Park.
There was no All Stars match in 2014 and the final game featuring the NRL Stars took place at the Robina Stadium in 2015 as the Indigenous All Stars won 20-6 with Inglis, Will Chambers and Chris Grevsmuhl scoring tries.
The sixth instalment of the All Stars game took place in 2016 and this time it saw the Indigenous All Stars take on a World All Stars. The World All Stars had three Englishmen in the side in Gareth Widdop, James Graham and Tom Burgess, while Nene McDonald, Semi Radradra and Konrad Hurrell were also selected.
The World All Stars were victorious with a 12-8 success with Hurrell and Radradra crossing for tries, while Leilani Latu and Dane Gagai went over for the Indigenous All Stars.
The Indigenous All Stars gained their revenge in 2017 as they destroyed the World Stars 34-8 at the Newcastle International Sports Centre as they ran in six tries courtesy of Bird, Ferguson, Ashley Taylor, Thurston, Gagai and Latu.
The game had another break in 2018 and it came back a year later with yet another opponent for the Indigenous All Stars.
It was the turn of the Maori All Stars to get their chance. They might have selected a strong squad with the likes of Peta Hiku, Dean Whare, Jordan Kahu, Kalyn Ponga, Jessse Bromwich, James Tamou and Adam Blair, but they were outclassed at AAMI Park.
The Indigenous All Stars scored seven tries with Josh Addo-Carr leading the way with two, while Bevan French, Ferguson, David Fifita, Cody Walker and Josh Kerr completed the 34-14 rout.
Indigenous All Stars vs Maori All Stars predictions & tips
This game will be the ninth time the Indigenous side have taken to the field and they have once again named a strong squad to take on their Maori opponents.
Head coach Laurie Daley doesn’t have any Sydney Roosters players available as they are in England for their World Club Challenge clash with St Helens. He still has a lot of talent to choose from, with Latrell Mitchell starting at fullback with Josh Addo-Carr and Blake Ferguson on the wings.
The Indigenous side is loaded with quality and they also have the likes of Tyrone Roberts, Jack Wighton, Wade Graham, Tyrone Peachey, David Fifita and Josh Kerr starting the game with Joel Thompson and Tyrell Fuimaono on the bench.
The Maori All Stars are not just in Queensland to make up the numbers. Coach David Kidwell also has plenty of big names to choose from. He has selected Kalyn Ponga at fullback, while brothers Malakai Watene-Zelezniak and Dallin Watene-Zelezniak are named on the wings.
Jahrome Hughes and Kodi Nikorima will partner each other in the halves, while their pack consists of Adam Blair, Kenny and Jesse Bromwich and Kevin Proctor. They have experience on the bench as well with Issac Luke, Bryson Goodwin and Dylan Walker.
This is a tough game to call. You have to remember that this will be the first real hit out for most of the players and there will be a lot of ring rust. At the start, I thought the Indigenous All Stars would be clear winners in this game, but having looked at the squads I actually think the Maori squad is better.
They have class in the backs with the likes of the Watene-Zelezniaks, Brad Takairangi, Ponga and Esan Masters, while Hughes and Nikorima seem a better pairing than Alex Johnston and Tyrone Roberts.
I’m going for the Maori All Stars to come out on top, the Indigenous side may be the favourites, but apart from Addo-Carr and Ferguson on the wings, I don’t see a lot to trouble the Maori side.
I’m backing the Maori All Stars to win this game, while I also fancy them to win this with the +4 handicap.
Despite backing the Maori All Stars to win the game, I do feel that the Indigenous side will score the opening try. They will start the game really strong, but fade away in the second half. I’m backing ‘The Fox’ Josh Addo-Carr to score the opening try at 8/1.
Another market I fancy in this game is the ‘Try Win’ combo. I fancy Kalyn Ponga to score at any time in the 80 minutes and the Maori All Stars to win the game.