Today, some more news from Europe with GB Pioneers touring Greece and also Norway announces their squad for the weekends Euro Shield.
Great Britain Student Pioneers’ seventh tour has begun with the select side playing three matches in eleven days against Greece XIII beginning tomorrow (5th July), with all the games taking place on the island of Rhodes.
Past tours have been to the likes of Norway, Latvia, Kazakhstan, Estonia and, most notably, Ukraine where the game has continued to develop and thrive, with one of their most notable latest victories being over BARLA GB Lions earlier this year.
The Greeks are led by Anestis Karageorgiou, president of the Hellenic RL Committee, a governing body approved by the Greek courts.
Newly appointed Pioneers Team Manager Charanjit Sandhu (Keith) and Tour boss Steve Curtis are keen to give the touring side the opportunity to develop not only the sport in another country but also the Pioneers’ own interpersonal skills.
This year’s squad is made up of 20 players ranging from 17 different universities.
“This is an excellent opportunity for lads selected to help contribute to the game that they love so much and share their passion with another country,” said Sandhu. “For some of them it will be their first taste of representative rugby league.”
“All those chosen have contributed to the development of the game at their universities and in their countries. The fact that the squad has been selected from players from all over the four nations shows that the student game is developing over here as well.”
Curtis added, “This tour is a really good opportunity for everyone involved. In many ways we’re going into the unknown as we have no idea how far the sport is already developed in Greece but that is the most exciting part.”
“In previous tours the Pioneers have left a real lasting legacy. Ultimately, it would be great to help Greece get to a point where they can compete in the World Cup so it’s a real challenge for us all and something I am proud to be involved in.”
The managers, coaches and players are specially invited on behalf of David Oxley, Chairman of the Student Rugby League and former Chief Executive of the Rugby Football League.
GB Student Rugby League Pioneers 2011 Squad
– Leeds University have donated a number of items to help develop the sport in Greece.
– Leeds Rhinos provided the facilities for the players to train and a donation.
– Hull Kingston Rovers have donated 25 playing shirts for the Greek team.
– Milford Marlins provided the food for the training weekend and access to their facilities
Norway has named a strong 25-man squad for the European Shield, which commences on Saturday in Oslo against Germany, their first official home international.
“We are really excited by the upcoming shield matches,” said Rugby League Norge chief executive Warren Heilig. “We hope to do ourselves and the competition proud and give the Germans and Maltese a good run for their money.”
The squad is strengthened by some experienced overseas-based players, namely the Haigh brothers, Lars and Nils, who play for National Conference Premier side Saddleworth Rangers, and Tye Ingebrigsten from Mackay Cutters in the Queensland Cup.
He will make his international debut having arrived in Norway last week and joined the Fredrikstad Falcons, for whom he scored four tries in a devastating stint at the weekend.
Erlend Meldalen, Trym Vindahl (Aker Seagulls); Cam Leslie, Fredrik Skovly, Hans Meyer, Nick Palmer, Peter Engeland (Oslo Capitals); Isaac Schmidt, Joakim Jaksland, Joshua Skidmore Hornby (Tromsø Polar Bears) ; Daniel Rossetvik, Eric Sonny Mellor, Martin Smidt Sagstuen, Robin Svendsson (Flisbyen Broncos) ; Alexander Rønning, Jørgen Schmidt, Kristian Ytterdahl Elgheim, Tommy Kjøniksen (Fredrikstad Falcons) Kristoffer Borsheim (Stavanger); Sakaraia Ravonokula (Bergen) ; Kim Ingebrigsten (Deception Bay Bombers); Tye Ingebrigsten (Mackay Cutters) ; Lars Haigh, Nils Haigh (Saddleworth Rangers); Kristoffer Milligan (Flekkefjord)
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