Former NRL star to play with Taree City

Michael Buettner offloads during his days with the North Sydney Bears. He'll play with the Taree City Bulls tomorrow against Wingham at the Jack Neal Oval.

Michael Buettner offloads during his days with the North Sydney Bears. He'll play with the Taree City Bulls tomorrow against Wingham at the Jack Neal Oval.

HE'S played in the NRL with three clubs, State of Origin for NSW and one match for Australia.

Now Michael Buettner will line up for Taree City Bulls in the Kristylea Bridge Charity Cup match against Wingham in Group Three Rugby League tomorrow at the Jack Neal Oval.

Buettner, 41, hasn't played in the NRL since retiring in 2004. He's played in a number of fixtures in a similar capacity to tomorrow since then, although he hasn't had a game in more than a year.

He was due to play for the Bulls against Wingham last season along with brothers Phil and Matt Adamson.

"But I was knocked out in a game the week before, so that was the end of that,'' he said.

"I'm all ready to go this year. It's for a great cause.''

Buettner said he has no expectations on how be might fare. In fact, he wasn't even sure which team the Bulls were playing.

"I don't know how many minutes I have in me, how many tackles I can do or runs I can make,'' he said.

Buettner will go in cold. He won't have a training run with his team-mates and in all probability he won't even know their names.

"I don't even know where I'll be playing,'' the former representative utility back said.

Buettner played with both Phil and Matt Adamson during their early days in Sydney at Parramatta. They were later rivals on many occasions when the Adamsons moved to Penrith.

"It's a shame Phil's not playing this weekend,'' he said.

He's not sure how much he'll get involved, conceding it is difficult as he doesn't know any of the team's structures.

"They talk about playing in a dinner suit - well that could be me,'' he laughed.

Phil Adamson said Buettner will start at five-eighth.

"The crowd will want to see him start and it'll be good for the kids to play with a quality five-eighth like him,'' he said.

"He'll steer us around and I hope I can get 20 minutes out of him. I'll see how he pulls up after that.''

Adamson said he was never a chance of playing. In fact, he's still getting over last year's match.

"I still can't run,'' he said.

He said a hip he dislocated back in his Penrith days has been giving him trouble since the match against Wingham, where he scored a crucial try in Taree City's win.

"If Mick wanted to have a game with me then he should have played last year and had a crack,'' he laughed.

Phil added his brother Matt pulled up reasonably from the 2013 contest.

"But he's in better shape than me, although his knee and ankle blew up big time.''

The Bulls have a full program planned for tomorrow that will include junior games starting from 9am. There will also be a function tomorrow evening at the Airport Tavern.

Proceeds from the day will go to Can Assist, an organisation that provides financial and practical support for local cancer patients.

While there'll be an earlier kickoff for the minor grade games, the first grade will be underway from the usual time of 3pm.

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