These last two weeks I have been on the road again, yes my job keeps me quite busy and so finding time to see what is happening in the world og Rugby league is at a premium, but I still manage it. This week I have been able to visit upon an interest of mine and went back to Lodz to see how things are going in Poland. Also some more good work in Russia being done as well as the RLIF have an annual report!
Rugby League in Poland is making small strides as it continues to look for more players and to set up clubs. There has been a wide interest of heritage and ex-pat players from around the world which is good to see. The first steps in establishing the Polska Rugby XIII have been taken, with a website now up and running that will allow people to have a better look at what is going on with the country there. The website is http://www.prxiii.com also http://www.polskarugbyxiii.com will take you to the same page.
With my travels I have been able to pop back into Poland and see how the Lodz Magpies and Polska Rugby League have been doing. They now have a full sports field to play and train on twice a week and have a core group of 20 or so players. They are now looking at promoting themselves and the sport through schools and also some of the smaller towns surrounding the city, where they is little sport promoted and help the you do have some objective in life.
I did a training session with the players, and also refereed a game of 7 a side on a half court where we had interest from some soccer players and some more Union players. There is much enthusiasm and in the next couple weeks with the end of the school and university semesters (many have had exams this week and next week) the numbers will increase, as well in the next week there should be some more exciting news from Polska Rugby XIII about future games, which will help attract new players.
The Russian Rugby League Association took part in the Eighth Military Sports Forum in the heart of Moscow last weekend, organising an under-12 competition in Red Square in the shadow of the iconic Kremlin.
Six teams – Vereya, Golovkovo, Threshers, Junior Dynamo, Arkhangelskoye and Nara – took part, with Vereya triumphant in.
“Our young players have shown that our beloved rugby league is still alive in Russia,” said RARLC official Sapozhnikov of the tournament put together by Dinamo RL chief Victor Kraev. “We must use every opportunity to organise and conduct competitions to help our sport to develop.”
The winners were awarded medals by notable Soviet and Russian sporting figures including Deputy Chairman of Dinamo Moscow, V.U. Timoshin, a double Olympic, world and European champion and ex-world champion boxer Konstantin Tszyu’s trainer, L.D. Goncharov.
For those of you who are interested, the RLIF have released an annual report on the state of the sport. You can have a look at it at this website: http://rlifmedia.dyndns.org/docs/RLIF%20Annual%20Report%202011.pdf
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