EurFed RLEF - League Overseas - General

S J

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Following a comprehensive bidding process, Ghana has been chosen to host the 2022 Middle East Africa Championship, which will run from 27 September to 2 October. Four nations will take part - Morocco, Nigeria and Cameroon joining the hosts - in what will be the third edition of the championship.
 

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Rugby League Norge/Norway has announced their domestic schedule for the men’s running game. The season is due to kick off on April 30, culminating with a Grand Final scheduled for Saturday 17 September.
 

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The board of Polska/Poland Rugby XIII is inviting applications for the role of head coach of the national team. Established in 2015, PRXIII’s focus for 2022 is to establish a fourth club and commence a full domestic competition, along with playing a minimum of two internationals in the autumn.
 

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Scott Simon has been appointed Chair of Scotland Rugby League. Scott will take over from Keith Hogg who stepped down after 12 years of leadership due to ongoing health issues.

Scott Joined the Scotland Rugby League Board in 2019 as Director of Pathways and is now privileged to lead Scotland Rugby League in delivering its strategic ambition, by transferring his wealth of applied experience back into the organisation, at both grassroots and International level. Scott has a PhD in Elite coaching, is an accredited strength and conditioning coach, was voted Elite Sport Coach of the Year 2021, and is as happy at the coaching coal-face as he is in the Board room.

Commenting on his appointment, he said “I am honoured to be entrusted with the strategic leadership of Scotland Rugby League in meeting its ambitions. I look forward to building on the legacy of the outgoing Chair Keith Hogg, and helping the sport grow domestically while supporting our National Teams to deliver on the International stage.”

With an inclusive version of the game for everyone and a World Cup year, it is an exciting time to be involved in Scotland Rugby League."
 

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The Jamaica Rugby League Association is set to officially restart national training for domestic players, after getting the green light from the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM). The permission is timely as the Reggae Warriors are set to participate in the Rugby League World Cup in England at the end of 2022, and its domestic contingent has gone over 18 months without matches.

Plans are in place to have maximum 50 male and a similar number of female players chosen, with two representative squads for each to then be selected under the Parish Of Residence (POR) banner. Team Red will feature players mostly residing or playing for clubs/colleges/universities in Kingston and St. Andrew Parishes, whilst Team Blue will be made up of players mostly living in or playing for clubs/colleges/universities in St. Catherine and other parishes.

Strict ODEM Covid-19 protocols will be followed at all sessions and games. A total of five matches are expected to be staged from April to September, Covid conditions permitting. All players and officials must be vaccinated or undergo testing before each session.
 

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Twelve clubs, split into three groups, representing five nations - Serbia, Turkey, Montenegro, Albania and Bulgaria - will take part in the 2022 Balkan Super League, which is set to kick off on the weekend of the 2-3 April.

Group A will feature six clubs: RLC Dorcol Tigers, RLC Partisan 1953, current holders RLC Red Star (Serbia), RLC Fethiye Falcons (Turkey), RLC Arsenal (Montenegro) and RLC Locomotive (Bulgaria), whilst Group B will be split into two comprising B1 - Youth RLC Morava Cheetahs (Serbia), RLC Antalya Warriors (Turkey) and RLC Tirana (Albania) and B2 - RLC Radnicki Belgrade, RLC Radnick Nis (Serbia) and RLC Mornar (Montenegro).

In the play offs, on 18-19 June, the winners of B1 will face the top side in B2 in their Grand Final, and the following week the top two in group A will meet to decide the champions.

Balkan Super League director, Dragan Pavlovic, commented: “This is big step for us after the pandemic which affected all sports organizations across Europe and prevented us playing the Balkan Super League in full in 2020 and 2021.
 

Raboriginal

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Twelve clubs, split into three groups, representing five nations - Serbia, Turkey, Montenegro, Albania and Bulgaria - will take part in the 2022 Balkan Super League, which is set to kick off on the weekend of the 2-3 April.

Group A will feature six clubs: RLC Dorcol Tigers, RLC Partisan 1953, current holders RLC Red Star (Serbia), RLC Fethiye Falcons (Turkey), RLC Arsenal (Montenegro) and RLC Locomotive (Bulgaria), whilst Group B will be split into two comprising B1 - Youth RLC Morava Cheetahs (Serbia), RLC Antalya Warriors (Turkey) and RLC Tirana (Albania) and B2 - RLC Radnicki Belgrade, RLC Radnick Nis (Serbia) and RLC Mornar (Montenegro).

In the play offs, on 18-19 June, the winners of B1 will face the top side in B2 in their Grand Final, and the following week the top two in group A will meet to decide the champions.

Balkan Super League director, Dragan Pavlovic, commented: “This is big step for us after the pandemic which affected all sports organizations across Europe and prevented us playing the Balkan Super League in full in 2020 and 2021.
Red star normaly goes pretty well.
 
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S J

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Montenegro men will make their international bow in Malta, at the Victor Tedesco Stadium, Hamrun on Saturday 14 May when they face Malta (kick off 3pm local time).

The game marks a return to home soil for Malta for the first time since the 30 June 2018 when they faced Ukraine, and they will hoping to return to winning ways after two defeats in Euro D last year in Turkey.

Malta RL general manager, David Axisa, commented: “MRL are honoured to be involved with Montenegro's first senior international fixture. We are very much looking forward to being back playing in front of our own fans and with a pool of domestic players to choose from, this is a boost for everyone.”

Jovan Petrovic, vice chair of Montenegro RL said: “I am hoping that we are going to give a good show first time out and thank Malta for allowing us the opportunity to do that. We very much look forward to travelling there for what should be a special occasion.”
 
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Raboriginal

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Raboriginal Raboriginal Europe is really taking off - and Africa. Who knows - maybe Ribot's ideas on China will come true too ... :)

It is a great game and success garners success. It could become a snowball.
Raboriginal Raboriginal Europe is really taking off - and Africa. Who knows - maybe Ribot's ideas on China will come true too ... :)

It is a great game and success garners success. It could become a snowball.
Lots of good things happening in Europe, unfortunately the pandemic halted a lot of that, hopefully now they get back on track. I'd really love to see the game expand more into Africa, there is currently some good things happening in Ghana, Nigeria and Cameroon if I remember correctly. South Africa you would think would have potential being a rugby mad nation, we just have never seem to make much of an impact in there.
2 countries that I thought were developing well before the pandemic was Jamaica and Turkey not to sure how there doing now.
There is a great podcast all about international rugby league called chasing kangaroos, which is worth a listen too.
 
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S J

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Lots of good things happening in Europe, unfortunately the pandemic halted a lot of that, hopefully now they get back on track. I'd really love to see the game expand more into Africa, there is currently some good things happening in Ghana, Nigeria and Cameroon if I remember correctly. South Africa you would think would have potential being a rugby mad nation, we just have never seem to make much of an impact in there.
2 countries that I thought were developing well before the pandemic was Jamaica and Turkey not to sure how there doing now.
There is a great podcast all about international rugby league called chasing kangaroos, which is worth a listen too.

Yes - I think I put news on them above somewhere.

Quite a bit going on.
 
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S J

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Red Star in world club rugby first with launch of crypto Fan Token

Belgrade’s Red Star RLC has become the first rugby club in the world to launch a fan token.

Launched in partnership with Blocksport, one of the world’s leading blockchain providers of Fan App, Fan Tokens and NFTs for the sports world, the first 10,000 $RLK tokens were launched today priced $1 each.

Fan Tokens will create new opportunities for Red Star RLC to recognise and reward the club’s local and international fan base. Fans will also be able to access exclusive promotions and a number of other features on the Fan App.

Fan Token holders will have access to discounts when purchasing various club assets based on the number of tokens they own, discounts on club merchandise, access to personalised birthday messages and additional special content delivered via Fan App, ability to exchange your

The first token holders will become part of a special committee on Fan App to talk directly about the Balkan Super League and the investment strategies required to build stronger clubs.
 

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One of European rugby league’s leading administrators, Tiziano Franchino of the Federazione Italiana Rugby League, passed away over the weekend at the age of 44 from a suspected heart attack.

Franchini was present at the meeting in Paris in 2003 that founded the Rugby League European Federation, which became the ERL, and was on the governance committee that recently proposed significant changes to the board, which are currently being implemented.

He played in four senior internationals for Italy, making his debut in the 2008 European Shield against Germany and also faced the Czech Republic in that tournament, Lebanon in the 2009 European Cup, and was part of the Azzurri’s 2015 victory over Ukraine in Kyiv in Euro B.

Franchini was instrumental in the development of the women’s game in Italy, overseeing the establishment of the women’s national side and also representing ERL on the Women & Girls Advisory Group to International Rugby League.

ERL interim chair Graeme Thompson said: “This is devastating news, Tiziano was utterly committed to rugby league, not just in Italy where his presence was massive but in his work promoting the sport as a voluntary coach educator throughout Europe. Our thoughts are with his family, friends and FIRL at this desperate time.”
 

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Netherlands Rugby League Board has announced their new national head coach, following Kane Krlic standing down after seven years in post. They have appointed former Norway head coach Dave Hunter to the role on a two year contract beginning in May, which will include the next stage of qualification for the 2025 RL World Cup in France.

Hunter has been in charge of Norway since 2017, taking them to winning the Nordic Cup that season and Euro C North in 2018, as well as in two successful matches in the qualifiers for the forthcoming 2021 World Cup. He is also head coach and a player with Lillestrøm Lions, who he took to a domestic title.

Matt Rigby, NRLB operations director, commented: “We are delighted to bring someone of Dave’s pedigree into our set up in preparation for the 2025 RLWC Qualifiers next year. The recruitment process for Kane's successor commenced just before Christmas and has been a new and difficult process for us as a board in finding a successor.
 

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History was made at the Impala Stadium, Nairobi when Kisumu Winam defeated Rift Valley Ruffians from the Nakuru region 34-20, in the first-ever Kenya Rugby League Federation Grand Final.

Back rower Philemon Olang was the star performer, posting the opening two tries and having a hand in his sides four others, Kisumu leading 16-0 at the break. Kisumu head coach Antony Lamado, whose side was only formed three months ago, commented: “The boys have shown that they can play at this level and it is a pleasure to make history, that’s a real plus for our side.”

In the curtain-raiser for third place, Kitengela Sharks - who had topped the table going into the semi finals - defeated Wolves XIII, 36-18. The Kenya championship was made of six sides across the regions, Rhinos and Administration Police, Utawala the others.

Ruffians, who travelled 450km for the game, had two early opportunities to take the lead, but on both occasions lost the ball over the line and never fully recovered. Lawerence Okello, head coach of Rift Valley noted: “We tried our best but made too many mistakes and ended up playing catch up. We will build on this for next season as the game continues to grow here.” Lucky Otieno claimed ten points for his side.

The matches were officiated by members of the Middle East Africa technical courses being undertaken in Kenya around the games, Marshall Nortey (Ghana) and Kamdem Brice (Cameroon) refereeing a half each of the opening game, with Brian Odiwuory and Esther Nyambura (Kenya) touch judges, and Sarah Brendah (Kenya) and Nuhu Ibrahim (Nigeria) policing the in goals.

For the Grand Final, Warren Pretorius (South Africa) refereed with touch judges Andrew Pilkington (Spain) and Kamdem Brice (Cameroon), with Pascal inglesis (DR Congo), Danish Ndinya (Kenya) in goal.
 

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Canada Ravens start their preparation for the 2021 Women’s Rugby League World Cup, which begins in England in just under 200 days, with a first-ever ‘derby’ Test match against USA later today (kick off 2.30pm local time). The nations will meet at Burnaby Lake RC, in Burnaby British Columbia, in what will be a debut for the USA Redtails who started their women’s programme in 2020.

It will be the Ravens’ first international match since 2019 and they include experienced Meg Pakulis and Christina Burnham, who starred in the 2017 Women’s World Cup, alongside Gabriel Hindley who had a short stint with North Sydney Bears in 2020 before the pandemic hit. Ferris Sanboe, Ashley Holt and Petra Woods, who all played in the inaugural Canada East vs. West game in 2020 will also make their bow. In all, ten Ravens are in line to win their first caps.

Tampa Mayhem scrum half Samantha Black-Keels will skipper the inaugural Redtails, whilst hooker Nicole Fisch and loose forward Cait King are earmarked as ones to watch. Their squad is made up of players from nine clubs.

Preceding the match both nation’s reserve sides - the Selects - will play and, as part of the event, Canada Rugby League hosted a three-day training camp for both squads.
 

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Canada Ravens ran in nine tries to begin their preparations for the 2021 Women’s Rugby League World Cup in the autumn, with a first-ever ‘derby’ Test match win against USA at Burnaby Lake RC, Burnaby, British Columbia. The hosts triumphed 42-10 against the debutant Redtails in fine contest.

The Redtails took a shock early lead through Chicago North Shore hooker Nicole Fisch, goaled by Robyn Oliveri, but trailed 18-6 at the break after Ravens winger Petra Woods, with the first of her three tries, added to scores from Candace Scholten, Meg Pakulis and Brittany Jones.

In the second half, Ontario’s Pakulis and Alberta’s Jones both claimed their second tries, Meg Siciliano also crossing. Ravens’ assistant coach Darryl Fisher commented: “The Redtails started extremely aggressively, all credit to them, both in terms of line speed and in their contact.
 

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The Nederlandse Rugby League Bond has announced that they will play three fixtures, two at home and one away, this autumn as they continue to prepare for the 2025 Rugby League World Cup qualifiers. The 2021 Euro D winners will travel to Spain - the nations meeting for the first time - and then host Sweden, followed by Germany in the traditional, annual Griffin Cup.

The Dutch, under new head coach Dave Hunter, will visit Madrid on 17 September, meet the Swedes for the third time at Zaandijk RC in Zaandam a week later, and face Germany at the British School in the Netherlands, Voorschoton on 8 October, where they hope to attract a record crowd.

Hunter commented; “These fixtures are extremely important for the continued development of Dutch Rugby League. The guys won Euro D, but this year we’ll go up against a higher-ranked nation in Spain. It’s a great opportunity to test ourselves.