Wales Rugby League have confirmed their participation in July’s Wheelchair World Cup in the south of France and are now fundraising to send their team across the channel.
The competition is expected to involve six nations and will involve the players being away for over a week should they reach the Final. Due to funding cuts, no money is available from WRL centrally or Disability Sport Wales, so all players must either fund themselves or seek sponsorship. Wales came third in the 2013 World Cup after beating Australia, the first time that any side from Wales has beaten the Australians in any form of full international Rugby League.
Wales are competing in the Celtic Cup at The Peak, Stirling, Scotland on Saturday 29th April where they will be defending their trophy where again all players and staff are paying their own way.
Wales Wheelchair Rugby League team manager Mark Andrew Jones is delighted that Wales have confirmed their World Cup entry but knows that the hard work is just beginning.
He said: “We are holding our final training session before the Celtic Cup this Sunday between 1 and 5 at Deeside Leisure Centre. This is the players’ last chance to make the Celtic Cup squad and we’re open to any potential new players.
“We’ll be holding training sessions again in May and June prior to the World Cup. We will keep these as open training camps too, in order to attract as many players as possible.
“It’s been a tough few months as we decided whether we were able to go to France but after firm commitments from eight players and three staff, we were able to confirm our participation.
“Finance remains an issue and we will continue to try and fundraise so if there’s anyone who wants to sponsor the only Welsh RL international side to have ever beaten Australia, please get in touch.”
The Rugby League Wheelchair World Cup is scheduled to take place between July 18-28 in a number of venues in the south of France. Full information is set to follow.
For more information on sponsoring the Wales Wheelchair side, please email [email protected].
Wheelchair Rugby League is played as five-a-side but is as similar to running Rugby League as possible. The game is played with an oval ball unlike the “Wheelchair Rugby” played in the Olympics. Tries are scored by placing the ball down on or over the line and there are even conversions and drop goals, all done with the players’ hands. It makes for an exciting sport that is enjoyed by many.
Go to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mQsltYZQpS4 to watch highlights of one of Wales’ wins over Australia in the last World Cup.