Following completion of their domestic championship, Morocco Rugby League has named Jérôme Alonso as their head coach for the MEA Championships in Nigeria, in October, where they will initially face Cameroon. He will be assisted by Rachid Amraoui.
“I am very happy and proud to have been chosen to coach Morocco’s national team.,” Alonso said. “It is with great enthusiasm that I approach this new adventure and we will make every effort to be ready for the Championships, which will be the start of our project to further develop rugby league in this country. We are the founders of the Moroccan revival and it is a pleasure to be part of it.
“We have a lot of work to do and our first mission is to call the players in France to present the project and see if they want to be part of it,” he added. “The first feedback is positive and we are preparing a get-together for them on June 29 and 30 to see their reaction.”
There was a surprise in the Moroccan Grand Final, Assalam Guelmim winning the national championship for the first time, triumphing 4-0 against favourites Nador Arakmane XIII Sharks, in Berrchid.
Assalam head coach, Mohamed Boukassal, commented : “It was a really great experience for our team, to come out on top of the competition. Nador are a more experienced side and have a greater history but we managed to win and this has fired our team to want to play more games. The competition was at a very good level with little between all the teams.”
In a four-team league, the other two sides were Casablanca Black Eagles and South Bouzakarne Lions.
Morocco RL president, Yamina Abdesselem has just returned from the RLEF Congress in Istanbul, which she found to be a very valuable experience and exchange of information.
“The XIII Moroccan is in full construction in terms of the creation of other clubs and infrastructure,” she said. “The MEA Championships will be a good benchmark for us and enable us to continue to get wider recognition.”