Canada link up with NRL heavyweights Penrith

Canada Rugby League Association have revealed that they are linking up with NRL heavyweights Penrith Panthers starting next year in a program for young players in the country.

The Panthers have a notoriously impressive Junior League area and proven success with young players – winning the Holden Cup in two of the last three years it has been staged.

And they will now work with young Wolverines players from Canada, as the Panthers issued a statement outlining the plans via Canada’s Facebook page.

“The Panthers NRL Club will be assisting Canada Rugby League in their plans for a pathway to the 2017 Rugby League World Cup, by inviting 2 of their players to experience time at the club in early 2016.”

The Canadian players will be able to watch the NRL players train and take part in training sessions during their stay. St Marys Leagues Club has also offered to assist with the players being able to train with the St Marys Massey Cup and Sydney Shield Sides.

Junior League Manager Phil Cummings said: “This program is in its third year and the first year for the Panthers NRL Club supporting Canada Rugby League.

“Phil Gould, Executive General Manager of the Panthers NRL Club and Jim Jones Panthers, Recruitment Manager have both offered their support behind the program”.

CRLA President Paul O’Keefe said: “The CRLA has made Junior Development one of our major priorities and it’s exciting news for all young athletes in Canada who want to play Rugby League!

“This is the perfect time to start working with the Panthers, with their new academy facilities going to be top class when completed in 2016, as they celebrate their 50th Anniversary. This will be an important asset as we work hard to be included in the 2017 Rugby League World Cup. I would like to take this opportunity to thank Phil Gould & Jim Jones for their support on this program, St Marys Rugby League Club and Phil Cummings for his incredible efforts ensuring the growth of our development program for over three years now!”