The biggest surprise at the 30th birthday of rugby league star Ali Brigginshaw over the weekend was one that she’d planned herself; the captain of the inaugural Brisbane Broncos NRLW team popped the question to her partner Kate Daly at the celebrations in Brisbane.

Ali was giving a speech to those gathered at her birthday when she suddenly went off-script (or so it seemed) and dropped to one knee to propose to Kate, managing to keep the whole plan a secret.

Ali had not just planned the proposal either; she’d organised an engagement party the next day in her hometown of Ipswich, where the pair celebrated with friends and family, and Kate’s two kids, Addison and Alfie.

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And just when I thought all the surprises were over ???? Huge thankyou must go to @pamstagram59 and @jodiburns63 who set up the sweetest engagement lunch for us today. Ali had planned this weekend down to the last detail and I got to celebrate the happiest day with those closest and most importantly, my babies got to join in on the fun. To be honest, I’m actually really impressed that both Addison and Alfie were able to keep a secret and not tell me about what Ali had planned for their Mummy the night before ???????? (I’m told Alfie kept saying, bigggg diamond Ali ????) I will never forget these past couple days. My cheeks hurt from smiling so hard and my feet are aching from dancing all night. I love you so much @ali_brigg Thankyou for making me feel so beautiful, loved and appreciated every single day, and committing your life to me and our children ❤️❤️

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As well as being the captain of the Broncos NRLW team, Ali Brigginshaw plays halfback for the Maroons in the State of Origin, plays in the national womens team, the Jillaroos, is a dual World Champion, and came runner-up to take home the 2019 Golden Boot, but narrowly missed out to team-mate Jessica Sergis.

Ali and Kate have been together since August last year, and live together in Ipswich with Kate’s two kids.

Ali has been outspoken about being public with her sexuality, and after she shared a kiss with Kate to celebrate the Broncos’ premiership win in 2018, said she wasn’t the type to keep her affection private and wants to be a positive influence on younger people exploring their own identities.

“I’ve never been one to hide my affection,” Brigginshaw said after the photo went viral.

“She’s the person I love…I have her here and I’m not going to say, ‘I can’t show you affection at the game’.”

Kate is the reason why I train hard; my family is a reason I train hard, and I go up and give them a big hug and a kiss and that doesn’t mean any different to when I go up and give her a kiss.

Also, little girls might grow up to love the same sex, and I want them to see they don’t need to be ashamed of it. I walk around the street holding Kate’s hand because I’m not ashamed of it.

Image: Instagram / @ali_brigg