First 9s Tournament Played in Istanbul

Six men’s and four women’s teams have taken part in the first Rugby League 9s tournament to be held in Istanbul, at the Beylerbeyi Stadium.

The men’s sides – Bilgi Badgers (Bilgi university), Aqua Warriors, Eskisehir 222, Olimpos, Firuzkoy and Kadikoy Bulls – were split into two groups of three, with the top seeds contesting a final in which the Bulls defeated the Warriors 25-21 and Aqua’s Selim Ozdemir was named Most Valuable Player.

In the women’s competition Angus Kadikoy and Aqua Warriors were joined by two new clubs – Anku( Ankara university) and Dexter Kadikoy – with Angus Kadikoy triumphant in the decider, defeating the Warriors 40-0, and Bengu Ozgun the outstanding player.

“This is a very proud moment for the sport in Turkey,” commented TRLA General secretary, Gurol Yildiz. “The excitement of all players and teams was high.

“As we continue playing Rugby League the standard of games will develop.  Bilgi Badgers were the most improved team of the tournament. Eskisehir 222 surprised everybody as they included a number of U18 players – definitely a team to look out for in the future. Olimpos and new comers Firuzkoy, who have very good numbers playing, also showed great potential.

“With Beylerbeyi Stadium being set so near to Bosphorus Bridge, on the Asian continent, this tournament enjoyed a great scenic backdrop, impressing all who attended. The TRLA is now looking forward to the upcoming season next month.”