The Domestic Season Ski’s on!

By Daniel Andruczyk

This week sees three nations having continued with their domestic competitions over the Christmas and New Years period. France played out their catch up matches and had a round postponed with the recent heavy snow. Malta and Lebanon also continued with their domestic comps though no snow to worry about there. Unfortunate news too on the years first international.

Domestic Competitions


The Maltese Rugby League had their second round played just before Christmas with the North team running out winners this time 44-34. The points table thus looks as such:

Team P W D L PD PT
1 South 2 1 0 1 4 2
2 North 2 1 0 1 -4 2


The next two rounds of the Bank of Beirut Championships have been played with the two new teams still struggling to come to terms of the week in week out grind that comes to playing a season of the toughest sport on earth. Just before the Christmas break round 5 was played with Jounieh defeating Balamand 26-20, AUB having a comfortable win against the wolves 24-9 and USJ beating AUST 22-18. Last weekend round 6 saw two matches with LAU thrashing AUB 44-2 and the battle for the wooden spoon seeing the wolves edge out AUST 24-18. The points table thus is:

Team P W D L PD PT
1 LAU 4 4 0 0 276 8
2 Balamand 5 3 0 2 58 6
3 Jounieh 2 2 0 0 20 4
4 AUB 4 2 0 2 -7 4
5 USJ 4 2 0 2 -58 4
6 Wolves 4 1 0 3 -93 2
7 AUST 5 0 0 5 -158 0

Also good news to come from Lebanon over the Christmas break, the Sport has been recognised and given full federation status in Lebanon. This means that the sport can have access to sports grants form the government and should see the continued development of the Tripoli RLFC into a full club. Read more here.


France just had their three catch up games played over the break and their round 10 match postponed due to the heavy snow in Europe recently. The Catch up matches had one upset with Carpentras who are having a disastrous year this year beating the Lord Derby Champions Carcassonne 54-16. Limoux on form defeated UTC 24-12 and Carcassonne also defeated UTC 32 –24. The points table at the half way mark now stands at:

Team P W D L B PD PT
1 Lezignan 9 8 0 0 1 112 24
2 Pia 9 6 0 2 1 99 20
3 Carcassonne 9 5 0 3 1 55 18
4 Limoux 9 4 0 4 1 49 16
5 UTC 9 4 0 4 1 -24 16
6 Villeneuve 9 3 1 4 1 9 15
7 Avignion 9 2 1 5 1 -92 13
8 Carpentras 9 2 0 6 1 -26 12
9 St. Gaudens 9 1 0 7 1 -172 10

Papua New Guinea

Looks like the Bemobile Cup will expand this season too with the inclusion two new teams. Teams that have shown interest in joing the semi-professional compatition are the Hela Wigman (Tari), Porgera Nuggets (Enga) Gulf Siapea (Kerema), Simbu Warriors (Simbu), Rigo Roosters and Waghi Tumbe (Western Highlands). Full article here.

International News

News has filtered through from the Portuguese Rugby League that the international laid down for early in February against Japan has been cancelled and also further tours this year also have been postponed. No reason as to why yet. HOWEVER the Japanese are still coming to Australia on a 1 week tour and so am awaiting to find out what their itinerary will be for that week.

Rugby League World Rankings

A sneak peak at the Rugby League World magazines rankings that come out in the next issue.

  • 01. Australia
  • 09. Tonga
  • 10. Scotland
  • 11. Samoa
  • 19. Russia
  • 20. Czech Rep.
  • 21. South Africa
  • 29. Spain (Catalonia)
  • 30. Portugal
  • 31. Japan
  • 39. Niue
  • 40. Sweden
  • 41. Solomon Islands

Central Queensland bid

This week the CEO of the Central Queensland NRL bid, Denis Keeffe, came out claiming that the venture would be worth $75 Million to the local economy. I don’t have a problem with the CQ bid, I think if there is going to be another franchise in the NRL it should be there before another Brisbane team. But the biggest hurdle Denis outlines is

“Our biggest hurdle is convincing people here that they deserve a team.”

Personally I think the biggest hurdle is to get the splinter brigade to actually get off the fence and say that we will have two extra (or more) teams in 2013. Well I say good luck to them it would be great to see them and the Western Australian team in there.


A couple of rumours this week that have come through Rugby League International Scores. The first is that there is movement on the Poland Rugby League front with interest in Poland to establish it as well as a group in Australia ready to work with them.

Also there is talk that there may be a new Rugby League business venture with an ex-NRL player looking at overseas player placement with clubs in Australia, mainly players from the developing Rugby League Nations.

Interesting responses

Last blog I had a guest writer on, Keith Whitelock, whom posts on several forums. He had an interesting take on the NRL and splitting it into a conference style system like the USA. It drew many responses and the vast majority were praising it and seems to have people thinking. So A big Thanks to Keith and his blog. For the record, though its a different take on the system I came up with, I think the conference system could work also. I guess it all just comes down to economics in the end.

On the flip side my blog on the world ranking drew a lot of criticism, Mainly from the fact that New Zealand were ranked at number ten. This is fair enough people will always agree to disagree with what ever you write, some were more constructive than others, but all I will say is that the list is a measure of not just performances but the relative strengths of nations in Rugby league. Its not just the win loss ratio, but the domestic comp, the levels that the teams play how many matches are played what they do to help develop the sport internationally.  Unfortunately last year New Zealand played very very few games internationally and what they did play they did not do so well at. So based on the facts hard facts, rather than whimsical opinion, I still feel the list is a good indicator of where things are. Lets hope the RLIF comes up with something official soon.

Daniel Andruczyk’s email:

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