There is also lots of international news from over the last couple weeks that has been coming from Europe with the Czech’s Maltese forging ahead with their domestic seasons.
Calderdale College U19’s arrived in Malta yesterday for a training camp that sees the Lee Greenwood coached outfit take on Gozo RL tomorrow evening in Gozo.
Greenwood, who is also assistant coach of Championship club Halifax, has his squad based at Qawra and is hopeful his young charges can defend the Dove Men+Care trophy from its first visit in 2012 after the Englishmen ran out 58-8 winners over the Gozitans last February.
An ex Huddersfield Giants and London Broncos Super League player, Greenwood told Malteserugbyleague.com Malta is the ideal venue for his team to test themselves abroad, stating location, weather and the quality of opposition available as driving forces behind the team’s second visit in as many years.
In England, Malta international Jarrod Sammut says he is ‘only going to get better’ after scoring two tries against Wakefield in Super League’s season opener last weekend.
“I think there’s still plenty more to come. Not everything came off last week and things weren’t perfect, but this is probably the best I’ve felt for a while” Sammut told the Telegraph and Argus.
“I just need to keep taking care of myself and making sure I’m right each week. Hopefully by doing that I can keep being consistent and producing more performances like I did last weekend”
Following their AGM in Prague, the Czech Rugby League Association has announced an expanded domestic competition for 2013 with two divisions of five taking the field and increased junior participation.
The meeting saw the RFL send its first ever official observer with Graeme Sarjeant, a member of Red Hall’s legal department, attending as part of the European Union’s Governance Foundation Project which features senior RLEF governing bodies acting in a mentor capacity.
The CZRLA has overseen healthy progress in the last two years with Affiliate Membership of the RLEF achieved in 201, and the introduction of a Second Division in 2012 alongside the lengthening of the Czech First Division season. That progress will continue apace in 2013 with Second Division winners and runners-up Mikulov Roosters and Dragons Usti Nad Labem promoted and Prague moving down and a new side joining. In Brno.
“The 2013 CZRLA AGM produced several positive outcomes,” said national development manager Andy Mulhall. “”The most significant of which were the expansion of the First Division, the development of the Brno Associate club in readiness, both on and off field, to begin playing a competitive season in the Second Division and an indication that junior development is taking root not just amongst all 10 senior clubs, but also in several expansion areas around the country.”
“Despite the recent strides that the Czech Rugby League Association has made, it was reassuring to hear that they recognise the future challenges that they face and are realistic about providing for growth that is sustainable,” said Sarjeant. “Their current Board has an impressive range of expertise, but also demonstrated a desire to make the best use of all the local knowledge they have at their disposal with the assembly members. As such, there were positive contributions to the meeting from across the floor which stimulated some healthy debate.
The delegates also agreed the necessity of supporting the sport’s growing local footprint with capable coaches and referees and consequently agreed dates of the final coaching and match official courses of the RLEF Technical Strategy, which will see four Czech tutors attain their qualifications.
“There was also much positive news to come from the AGM in the form of communications and partnerships in progress,” continued Mulhall. “These are in relation to corporate sponsorships amongst the individual clubs, strategic cooperation, access to funding and logistical resources from the clubs’ local communities and their respective municipal representations.”