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May 23 2013 03:06 PM | League Express in Latest News
The schedule for the Police Rugby League World Cup was announced at the Provident Stadium, Bradford earlier today and sees current World Champions Fiji, Australia and host nation Great Britain go head to head in a round-robin format.
The two leading teams will then meet as part of the Festival of World Cups Finals Day at Headingley Carnegie Stadium on Sunday July 14.
May 23 2013 10:09 AM | League Express in Latest News
After six seasons at the helm, RLEF Match Officials Manager Steve Davis has decided to relinquish his post. Davis, the Federation’s inaugural match officials chief, will return to his native Sydney having spent the last 13 years in England.
“My time with the RLEF has been extremely rewarding and I am very pleased to know that after my departure the systems we’ve implemented will continue to improve the standards of match official development among our member nations,” he said. “European Rugby League has progressed to a point that is unrecognisable to when I joined the RLEF in 2007. I leave knowing that a large number of member nations are now qualified to internally deliver match officials development.”
May 22 2013 03:32 PM | Rugby League World in Rugby League World
And now, the end is near, it’s time to draw the final curtain: A famous line from a famous song which is quite appropriate for this issue of Rugby League World as our cover star, the ever-controversial Gareth Hock calls time on his Super League career to join the English exodus down under. We chat to Gareth about his chequered career, his dramatic departure from Wigan to Widnes and his ambition to represent England again at the World Cup before joining Parramatta next season.
Jamie Jones-Buchanan tackles another controversial character; recently retired top referee Steve Ganson puts down his whistle to talk about his new behind-the-scenes role at the RFL and takes a look back over a career which no one could ever say was uneventful. Just why did he send Moz off 12 seconds into a Test match against the Aussies? Find out here!
There’s no doubt Rugby League is the toughest of sports. Robbie Hunter- Paul looks at the rights and wrongs of asking players to put their bodies on the line twice over a gruelling Easter weekend and ponders whether financially Rugby League really has any choice. We also talk to Richard Moore, now with Leeds Rhinos but who has had to overcome a number of professional and personal setbacks to keep his career on track.
Players at Keighley Cougars are displaying a different kind of toughness. We have a special report on a groundbreaking scheme they are involved in to turn the lives of troubled youngsters in their local community around.
Welsh dual-code international Gareth Thomas talks to us about his belief in the World Cup and how it can help Rugby League pull in lots of new fans in Wales and beyond, and we take a look at Samoa’s ongoing preparations for the tournament. Planet League takes in recent developments in Sweden and Anthony Seibold demonstrates that you can play Rugby League and see the world.
Secret Speccie pays a first visit to Oxford’s Iffley Road ground, plus we chat with one of their new recruits, Matty Hadden. Hemel Stags wingman Tobias Rochester-Bremmer tells us how he got into Rugby League, as does St Albans Centurions coach Andy Champ and we also catch up with a former World Cup winner with Great Britain, Brian Lockwood.
As always, there’s lots more too with our regular grassroots, amateur and academy game coverage.
May 22 2013 01:18 PM | League Express in Latest News
England Women coach Chris Chapman has named a 24-strong squad for the Women’s Rugby League World Cup which kicks-off in July and culminates with the Women’s World Cup final at Headingley Carnegie Stadium, Leeds, on Sunday July 14.
The squad features nine players from Thatto Heath, six from Featherstone, five Bradford players, two from Normanton and sole representatives from Cross Fields and Coventry.
England will face stiff competition from Australia, France and three-time Women’s World Cup winners New Zealand if they are to lift the trophy on home soil this year but Chapman, who took over from Steve McCormack earlier this year, believes his squad has the ability to go all the way.
“We’ve had the squad training together since the start of the year and we’ve had some really good, tough sessions,” said Chapman.
“There are a lot of good players who have missed out on selection for the competition but I feel the group that we have selected have a good blend of experience and youth and have the skills to succeed if they apply themselves and work hard for each other.
“New Zealand will be confident of retaining their title and Australia will be coming here confident as well but we’re on home soil and we’ll be going out there to make an impact and hopefully we will be celebrating on July 14.”
May 22 2013 09:34 AM | League Express in Latest News
Oldham coach Scott Naylor is keen to extend Danny Whitmore's loan period at Whitebank. The Batley Bulldogs' player, at the club initially for one month, hinted after his first Oldham game at Hemel Stags that a longer stay couldn't be ruled out. Naylor has since confirmed that he would like to include 23-year-old Whitmore in his half-back plans on an open-ended agreement.
He said: "It would suit me to have him here for as long as John Kear (Batley boss) would allow it.
"Hopefully we can sort something out. Danny would like that, and so would we. I coached him at Salford, but when I came to Oldham he had already signed for Batley.
"It can take a half-back time to settle in at a new club, but Danny and Lewis Palfrey were often half-back partners in their academy days at Salford and they looked very comfortable together against Hemel."
May 22 2013 09:20 AM | League Express in Latest News
Ukraine has joined European Rugby League’s top table after the RLEF board of directors granted the UFRL full member status. Jubilant UFRL president Artur Martyrosyan commented, "This is a great victory for Ukrainian Rugby League. My heartfelt congratulations go out to all the fans, players and federation staff who have contributed to this historic event. I would like to express my gratitude to the RLEF directors for their trust and support of the sport in Ukraine. Now begins a new and more advanced stage of development here."
May 21 2013 04:03 PM | League Express in Latest News
Scott Dureau has been given the green light by doctors in Toulouse to resume playing following his recovery from an operation to remove a tumour in January.
“I'm very happy, it's obviously really good news, I was waiting for that decision for a long time,” said Dureau.
“The last five months since the surgery have been very long. I can't wait to be back on the field with my team mates.”
The 2012 Goldthorpe Medal winning scrum-half is set to return to action for Catalan Dragons against London Broncos this Saturday at the Magic Weekend at Manchester's Etihad Stadium.
May 21 2013 10:31 AM | League Express in Latest News
Widnes Vikings winger Patrick Ah Van has signed a contract extension keeping him at the club until the end of the 2015 season. Ah Van joined Widnes from Bradford Bulls in 2012 and made an immediate impression, finishing his debut season at the Stobart Stadium as top scorer with 16 tries and 34 goals yielding 132 points.
May 21 2013 10:21 AM | League Express in Latest News
Wakefield Trinity Wildcats have signed Parramatta Eels prop forward Taulima Tautai until the end of the 2014 campaign and he will join the Wildcats immediately after his release from the NRL club. Tautai has played over 70 first grade games in the NRL for Parramatta and Cronulla Sharks after making his debut for the Eels in 2008 and he will arrive at the Rapid Solicitors Stadium on Wednesday morning.
May 20 2013 03:51 PM | League Express in Latest News
The draw for the quarter-finals of the 2013 Northern Rail Cup will take place live on Premier Sports on Thursday May 23 between 7.15pm and 7.30pm during the free-to-air broadcast in the build-up to the Hunslet Hawks v Batley Bulldogs Championship fixture.
Batley are among the eight clubs involved in the draw and will be joined by Dewsbury Rams, Doncaster, Leigh Centurions, Sheffield Eagles, Swinton Lions, Whitehaven and Workington Town as the competition moves a step closer towards the Northern Rail Finals Day at The Shay, Halifax on Saturday July 20.