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Honor James

European Championship C - Malta v Greece

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The opening match in European Championship C will see Malta take on Greece in Melita on Saturday afternoon, the visitors on debut in official competition.


H.E. Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca, the President of Malta, will be presented to the teams and match official Serbian referee Radoslav Novakovic for an encounter that is expected to draw the biggest crowd for a rugby league game on the island.

Malta launched the game with a press conference at Hugo’s Pub in Paceville and although they will be without Jarrod Sammut, Matthew Mizzi from Australian side Central Queensland Capras has flown in to bolster the local talent.


The visitors, who arrive tomorrow (Friday) have included former Wakefield prop Michael Korkidas, who is currently playing for Dapto Canaries, in their squad for the game near Pembroke.


Malta coach Anthony Micallef is expecting a tough challenge. “We've had a different preparation this summer but it's one we believe will bring the best results,” he said.


“We have a changing team since our last experience in European competition some years ago but more domestic players challenging is very healthy for the squad. It promises to be an exciting match up.”


Joe Paolella, who plays for reigning Maltese champions, Malta Origin RL can’t wait for the experience.


“It's a great honour to have the opportunity to represent my country for a third time,” noted the 20-year-old. “The hype has been building for the last month and we're all very excited for the game.”


Tasos Pantazidis, president of the Hellenic Federation of Rugby League added: “We are all very excited about our first match in the European Championship.  We know that Malta has a much more experienced team, but we will try our best.”



Matthew Mizzi (Central Queensland Capras), Justin Barlogio (DC Slayers), Dylan Frendo, Jean-Pierre Zarb (Eagles RL), Andrew Muscat (Eccles Roosters), Christopher Parker (Gateshead Storm) ©, Danny Burke (London Skolars), Christian Briffa, Dillon Urry, Jeremy Dela, Joe Paolella, Peter Debono, Peter Ingham, Sam Keep (Malta Origin RL), Dragan Cerketa, Julian Caruana, Malcolm Attard, Matthew Spiteri (Stompers RL), Darren Edmunds, Graham Attard (Team Pit RL)



Giorgin Shyti (AEK Kokkinias), Aris Dardamanis, Nikolaos Kanellopoulos, Emmanouil Katalaktakis, Ioannis Roussoglou, Ioannis Valassas (Aris Petroupolis), Pandeleimon Arfaras, Stefanos Bastas, Nikolaos Bosmos, Mihail Chatziioannou,  Michail Giorgas–Spanos, Konstantinos Kotiadis (Knights of Rhodes), Ioannis Nake (Pegasus Neos Kosmos), Panagiotis Karefilis (Promitheas Rendi), Adam Bouris (unattached), Michael Korkidas (Dapto Canaries), Terry Constantinou (Sunbury Tigers), Liam Sue Tin (Pine Rivers)

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The President of Malta, H.E. Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca, watched as her national side were defeated by Greece, 32-18, in the opening fixture of European Championship C at the FC Melita Stadium near Pembroke.


She was accompanied by Greek ambassador to Malta, Alexandros Rallis who saw hooker Liam Sue-Tin turn in a man of the match performance for the visitors.


He was instrumental in the opening score, latching on to a Michael Korkidas break and sending Nikolaos Kanellopoulos over, Sue-Tin goaling.


Former Wakefield star Korkidas was the provider of the Greek second try for Terry Constantinou in the 12th minute, Sue-Tin again on target and Greece’s early dominance was confirmed when scrum half Michail Giorgas–Spanos scampered in, Sue-Tin’s goal giving them an 18-point cushion.


Malta hit back on the half hour as their half backs gained more control, winger Ed Willis crossing and Sam Keep converting.


The hosts began the second period in much better form, their best, centre Malcolm Attard with the first of his two tries, Keep’s goal reducing the gap to six points.


Malta were dealt a blow in the 50th minute when second rower Dragan Cerketa left the field with a knee injury and play was halted soon after when Giorgas-Spanos suffered concussion after a heavy collision.


The break for treatment seemed to suit the hosts as they drew level just after the hour through Attard and Keep’s third goal, delighting the around 300 fans.


Pine Rivers rake Sue-Tin then took charge, his great break and pass sending in stand off Niokolaos Bosmos, Sue-Tin adding the goal and a penalty four minutes from time to establish a vital two score lead.


Malta pressed in the closing stages but Korkidas completed the scoring with a long range touchdown, Sue-Tin keeping up his perfect kicking record.


MALTA 18 (6)


Andrew Muscat, Ed Willis, Malcolm Attard, Darren Edmunds, Jean-Pierre Zarb, Sam Keep, Danny Burke, Matthew Mizzi, Justin Barlogio, Jeremy Dela, Dragan Cerketa, Joe Paolella, Christopher Parker ©, Peter Ingham, Graham Attard, Matthew Spiteri,  Dylan Frendo


Tries: Willis (28), Attard (48, 62)

Goals: Keep 3/3


GREECE 32 (18)

Adam Bouris, Giorgin Shyti, Ioannis Valassas, Nikolaos Kanellopoulos, Ioannis Nake, Nikolaos Bosmos, Michail Giorgas–Spanos, Stefanos Bastas, Liam Sue-Tin, Michael Korkidas, Terry Constantinou, Konstantinos Kotiadis, Mihail Chatziioannou, Emmanouil Katalaktakis, Ioannis Roussoglou, Pandeleimon Arfaras, Panagiotis Karefilis


Tries: Kanellopoulos (2), Constantinou (12), Giorgas–Spanos (19), Bosmos (65), Korkidas (78)

Goals: Sue-Tin 6/6


Referee: Radoslav Novakovic (Serbia)

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