Tier 2 & 3 Rugby Forum

Rugby League World Cup 2017

Posts: 616
Joined: Tue, 27 May 2014, 20:40
National Flag:
Great BritainGreat Britain

Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby Thomas » Sun, 22 Oct 2017, 08:19

I know this is primarily a Rugby Union forum but we sometimes forget there is another code and the Rugby League World Cup is about to kick off in Australia next week:

Men's Teams:

Australia
NZ
Papua New Guinea
England
France
Samoa
Fiji
Scotland
Tonga
Lebanon
USA
Wales
Ireland
Italy

14 Teams participating... Some National Teams I have heard about but some didn't event know they had Rugby League. What are people's take on the competition?

The recent strengthening of the Tonga Team will be interesting. I would like to see a new winner but I fear it will be either NZ or Australia.

Previous Winners and Runners up in caps:

Australia 10 3 (1960, 1972, 2008)
Great Britain 3 1954, 1960, 1972 4 (1957, 1970, 1977, 1989–92)
New Zealand 1 2008 3 (1985–88, 2000, 2013)
England - 2 (1975, 1995)
France - 2 (1954, 1968)

The Women's Edition will be in the other forum but 6 teams are participating.

Posts: 1032
Joined: Sun, 18 May 2014, 13:27
National Flag:
AustraliaAustralia

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby Working Class Rugger » Sun, 22 Oct 2017, 08:54

Thomas wrote:I know this is primarily a Rugby Union forum but we sometimes forget there is another code and the Rugby League World Cup is about to kick off in Australia next week:

Men's Teams:

Australia
NZ
Papua New Guinea
England
France
Samoa
Fiji
Scotland
Tonga
Lebanon
USA
Wales
Ireland
Italy

14 Teams participating... Some National Teams I have heard about but some didn't event know they had Rugby League. What are people's take on the competition?

The recent strengthening of the Tonga Team will be interesting. I would like to see a new winner but I fear it will be either NZ or Australia.

Previous Winners and Runners up in caps:

Australia 10 3 (1960, 1972, 2008)
Great Britain 3 1954, 1960, 1972 4 (1957, 1970, 1977, 1989–92)
New Zealand 1 2008 3 (1985–88, 2000, 2013)
England - 2 (1975, 1995)
France - 2 (1954, 1968)

The Women's Edition will be in the other forum but 6 teams are participating.


A number of those teams will be rostered by Australians and Kiwis. Particularly the likes of Italy and Lebanon. While Scotland, Wales and Ireland will have a distinctly English influence. Hell, Tonga will have half the Kiwis squad from earlier this year plus several from the Kangaroos. Not exaggerating here.

There is literally no buzz about this event locally. There have been ads on the TV but I haven't met a soul who has any level of excitement for it and I live in a particularly strong League area.

I won't be watching as League bores me. Give me a Bledisloe Cup game anyday.

Posts: 892
Joined: Mon, 21 Apr 2014, 08:23
National Flag:
FranceFrance

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby beber » Sun, 22 Oct 2017, 09:20

An interesting fact : Mirco Bergamasco is playing for Italy

Posts: 3133
Joined: Sat, 05 Jul 2014, 02:44
National Flag:
AustraliaAustralia

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby thatrugbyguy » Sun, 22 Oct 2017, 10:00

I read that the other day, I had no idea he switched codes. As for the tournament itself, Australia are again going to walk it in, and there’s a really odd schedule and venue selection. There teams are filled with as many Aussies and Kiwis as possible, I think only the US team is entirely domestic players, but even that doesn’t seem to be helping. Scotland got walloped by a local U23 side in a warm up game and for all the talk of Tonga they looked completely directionless in their trial.

Posts: 892
Joined: Mon, 21 Apr 2014, 08:23
National Flag:
FranceFrance

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby beber » Sun, 22 Oct 2017, 10:18

France is full of french players. Only Jason Baitieri is australian but born in Paris and playing for the Catalans Dragons.
The team have some players based in England but they are all french.

USA is not entirely domestic, they got some kiwis and aussies in their ranks

Posts: 3133
Joined: Sat, 05 Jul 2014, 02:44
National Flag:
AustraliaAustralia

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby thatrugbyguy » Sun, 22 Oct 2017, 10:47

Yes, I apologise, I should have said the French team were also domestic players.

Posts: 2844
Joined: Thu, 17 Apr 2014, 02:51
Location: São Paulo
National Flag:
BrazilBrazil

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby victorsra » Sun, 22 Oct 2017, 12:11

I guess the real fake teams are Ireland, Scotland and Italy, right? Wales has League, USA is full of local club players.
Brazilian Rugby News: www.portaldorugby.com.br

Posts: 2844
Joined: Thu, 17 Apr 2014, 02:51
Location: São Paulo
National Flag:
BrazilBrazil

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby victorsra » Sun, 22 Oct 2017, 12:50

About the islands:
[youtube]https://youtu.be/qCDmXKkeHJg [/youtube]

About Lebanon: https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2017/ ... gby-league
Brazilian Rugby News: www.portaldorugby.com.br

Posts: 53
Joined: Sun, 20 Mar 2016, 22:28
National Flag:
IrelandIreland

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby kearnc25 » Mon, 23 Oct 2017, 12:06

victorsra wrote:I guess the real fake teams are Ireland, Scotland and Italy, right? Wales has League, USA is full of local club players.


I've never met anyone from Ireland that played Rugby League or heard of a club.

Posts: 1462
Joined: Wed, 14 Oct 2015, 13:30
National Flag:
GermanyGermany

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby RugbyLiebe » Mon, 23 Oct 2017, 14:29

victorsra wrote:I guess the real fake teams are Ireland, Scotland and Italy, right? Wales has League, USA is full of local club players.


All the teams apart from Oz, Kiwis, England, PNG and apparently France are fake.
Germany (!) a country with 4 rugby league teams (who all play rugby union in the other time) has beaten the Welsh national team with just local players.
Italy and the USA had literally no Italian born and bred players at the last RLWC, all Ozzies.

Went to the last RLWC, great fun, but nothing serious sportswise (apart from games between the Kangaroos, the Kiwis and England).
While the Lebanese story is a really nice and interesting read, it is actually a catastrophy from a world cup point of view. Are there any players actually FROM Lebanon? Doesn't read like it.
How to grow rugby worldwide?
Look at the world ranking in July. Teams ranked 1-10 have to play one team from 11-20 (they don't play in a regular competition) away the next year. 11-20 play 21-30 away and so on. Yes, it really is that simple.

Posts: 2844
Joined: Thu, 17 Apr 2014, 02:51
Location: São Paulo
National Flag:
BrazilBrazil

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby victorsra » Mon, 23 Oct 2017, 15:16

All the teams apart from Oz, Kiwis, England, PNG and apparently France are fake.

Not true. Most of USA players play in USA clubs. Most of Welsh and Fjian players were born in Wales and Fiji. Samoa and Tonga I woudn''t say they are fake, as NRL is developing and going after Islanders talents.
Brazilian Rugby News: www.portaldorugby.com.br

Posts: 32
Joined: Tue, 10 Nov 2015, 20:19
National Flag:
WalesWales

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby JamesWales » Mon, 23 Oct 2017, 15:16

Very little interest in this from Wales (or Britain generally really), which I suppose is a little sad, but it really is a very uncompetitive world cup. We already know almost 99% who the four semi finalists are. It's 80% likely Australia will win, with perhaps NZ and England having a 10% chance.

Rugby League is not without it's fans in Wales, and league is on the TV a fair amount (UK wide) but there is next to no interest in the Wales national team...maybe if we got to the semi finals it would be different?

Posts: 1462
Joined: Wed, 14 Oct 2015, 13:30
National Flag:
GermanyGermany

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby RugbyLiebe » Mon, 23 Oct 2017, 15:43

victorsra wrote:
All the teams apart from Oz, Kiwis, England, PNG and apparently France are fake.

Not true. Most of USA players play in USA clubs. Most of Welsh and Fjian players were born in Wales and Fiji. Samoa and Tonga I woudn''t say they are fake, as NRL is developing and going after Islanders talents.


To be fair, I haven't had a look at this year's squad. Last edition out of all the US players two players were Americans playing in the States. The other 5 players from the USA all were from Australia or NZ. (feel free to double check yourself: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2013_Rugb ... ted_States )

Article about the US 2013 team:
"The most recent scandal in American Rugby League again touched on player selection in the immediate run-up to this World Cup. This time it was not a league civil war, however. It was over the fact that almost all of the players selected were Australians and Englishmen with minimal ties to the United States making up the large majority of the roster. When you consider that one reason flaunted in domestic players’ faces to choose the AMNRL was that playing in the USARL meant banishment from Tomahawks selection, you can see how a domestic top-end player could feel shafted."

http://rugbywrapup.com/2013/12/usa-toma ... by-talent/

If that really changed, good on them.
How to grow rugby worldwide?
Look at the world ranking in July. Teams ranked 1-10 have to play one team from 11-20 (they don't play in a regular competition) away the next year. 11-20 play 21-30 away and so on. Yes, it really is that simple.

Posts: 85
Joined: Tue, 18 Nov 2014, 15:06
National Flag:
ScotlandScotland

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby honestly_united » Mon, 23 Oct 2017, 16:00

The Scottish team is a bit of a joke this time round, with no Scottish based players (and probably none that are actually born in Scotland).
Im pretty sure all would be Scottish qualified under the current guidelines (ie at least grandparent born in Scotland).
The Scottish international team started out as a fully home grown team with all local based players, but over the years it has transformed (probably the same time they changed from Great Britain to England/Wales/Scotland) to pretty much be whatever Super league players that qualified but couldn't get a game for England.
The last world cup I think we had some scottish based players, or at least players that started out playing locally before moving down south but not anymore. In fact we dont even play games in Scotland anymore, that last 2 or 3 "home" internationals have all been in the north of england (probably less travelling for the players!)

Posts: 116
Joined: Tue, 05 Jul 2016, 04:18
National Flag:
United StatesUnited States

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby eal22 » Mon, 23 Oct 2017, 17:53

There are indeed a number of Aussie, Kiwis, and Englishmen filling out the other teams, but many of these countries do have growing RL scenes. France is completely homegrown, and PNG is a hotbed of League. Wales and Lebanon are quite developed locally, Ireland are working hard, and the USA (along with Canada - see the Toronto Wolfpack) are seeing quite a bit of growth in the code. Scotland on the other hand are a completely bogus team. Fiji, Samoa, Tonga produce a lot of players but end up getting the leftovers from whoever doesn't get selected for Australia/NZ, although a few Kiwis have defected to Tonga.

While not perfect, this tournament will certainly be a festival of Rugby League, and Rugby Union is hardly innocent when it comes to teams borrowing from other countries.

Posts: 2844
Joined: Thu, 17 Apr 2014, 02:51
Location: São Paulo
National Flag:
BrazilBrazil

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby victorsra » Mon, 23 Oct 2017, 19:31

Rugby Union is hardly innocent when it comes to teams borrowing from other countries.

Let's remember for the RWC2015 Samoa had 12 players and Tonga 11 players born in NZ or Australia. Their League national teams have the same approach.

What is odd League is that they allow players to change national teams. Taumalolo playing for Tonga, Hayne for Fiji... it don't like it, but sometimes we think some ex All Blacks/Wallabies players should be allowed to play for the PIs too...
Brazilian Rugby News: www.portaldorugby.com.br

Posts: 53
Joined: Sun, 20 Mar 2016, 22:28
National Flag:
IrelandIreland

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby kearnc25 » Mon, 23 Oct 2017, 19:40

eal22 wrote:Ireland are working hard,

I'm Skeptical of that tbh the scene seems non-existent.

Posts: 1032
Joined: Sun, 18 May 2014, 13:27
National Flag:
AustraliaAustralia

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby Working Class Rugger » Mon, 23 Oct 2017, 20:00

eal22 wrote:There are indeed a number of Aussie, Kiwis, and Englishmen filling out the other teams, but many of these countries do have growing RL scenes. France is completely homegrown, and PNG is a hotbed of League. Wales and Lebanon are quite developed locally, Ireland are working hard, and the USA (along with Canada - see the Toronto Wolfpack) are seeing quite a bit of growth in the code. Scotland on the other hand are a completely bogus team. Fiji, Samoa, Tonga produce a lot of players but end up getting the leftovers from whoever doesn't get selected for Australia/NZ, although a few Kiwis have defected to Tonga.

While not perfect, this tournament will certainly be a festival of Rugby League, and Rugby Union is hardly innocent when it comes to teams borrowing from other countries.


The USARL saw two clubs have to withdraw from competition this year due to lack of numbers. Where is this supposed growth? All the interest in setting up these teams to play in the English system is coming from foreign backers. Even the Wolfpack. Eric Perez does all the talking but most of the money is coming from David Argyle. An Australian mining magnate. The group behind the New York bid a Northern English.

Ireland has seen a drop off in clubs. I know outside of Ulster where the 4 or 5 clubs they have are relatively stable that the other provincial competitions have struggled for numbers.

Scotland's system is a relative joke even for RL. France having a homegrown team is far from shocking as they've had something resembling a national league since before WW2. They're still rubbish.

Rugby League's 'expansion' into the PI's is no real expansion. Most of the guys kitting up for the likes of Tonga were born in either Australia or New Zealand and have actually played for either one of those previously.

Posts: 1032
Joined: Sun, 18 May 2014, 13:27
National Flag:
AustraliaAustralia

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby Working Class Rugger » Mon, 23 Oct 2017, 20:03

victorsra wrote:
Rugby Union is hardly innocent when it comes to teams borrowing from other countries.

Let's remember for the RWC2015 Samoa had 12 players and Tonga 11 players born in NZ or Australia. Their League national teams have the same approach.

What is odd League is that they allow players to change national teams. Taumalolo playing for Tonga, Hayne for Fiji... it don't like it, but sometimes we think some ex All Blacks/Wallabies players should be allowed to play for the PIs too...


There have been examples of players joining one squad leading up to a RLWC only to received a call up from their 'preferred' nation (that being one with a chance of winning) and then leaving the squad they've been training with for the other a matter of a week from the tournament kicking off.

Posts: 1587
Joined: Wed, 30 Apr 2014, 16:57

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby 4N » Mon, 23 Oct 2017, 21:00



Good article, thanks. They do have some homegrown players as well.

Posts: 116
Joined: Tue, 05 Jul 2016, 04:18
National Flag:
United StatesUnited States

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby eal22 » Mon, 23 Oct 2017, 23:03

Working Class Rugger wrote:
eal22 wrote:There are indeed a number of Aussie, Kiwis, and Englishmen filling out the other teams, but many of these countries do have growing RL scenes. France is completely homegrown, and PNG is a hotbed of League. Wales and Lebanon are quite developed locally, Ireland are working hard, and the USA (along with Canada - see the Toronto Wolfpack) are seeing quite a bit of growth in the code. Scotland on the other hand are a completely bogus team. Fiji, Samoa, Tonga produce a lot of players but end up getting the leftovers from whoever doesn't get selected for Australia/NZ, although a few Kiwis have defected to Tonga.

While not perfect, this tournament will certainly be a festival of Rugby League, and Rugby Union is hardly innocent when it comes to teams borrowing from other countries.


France having a homegrown team is far from shocking as they've had something resembling a national league since before WW2. They're still rubbish.


One has to remember that Rugby Union sided with the fascist Vichy regime to outlaw rugby league in France and all grounds, equipment, and money were confiscated from RL and given to RU. The value of assets stripped amounted to 2 million 1940 Francs. RL in France has never been offered reparations by Union either I should add. Some things to keep in mind before proclaiming French rugby league as rubbish.

Regarding north american growth, the Toronto Wolfpack are getting crowds of 7,000+ whilst playing in the English third division. Name me any rugby union team in North America getting weekly crowds of 7,000 - unless you think the Australian mining magnates are flying the spectators in from Kalgoorlie?

Posts: 3133
Joined: Sat, 05 Jul 2014, 02:44
National Flag:
AustraliaAustralia

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby thatrugbyguy » Mon, 23 Oct 2017, 23:13

The issue I have when people compare this to rugby is that in Rugby once you play for that nation you are committed pretty much for life. In League you can jump between nations literally weeks before the world cup. I have no problem with someone electing to play for a country they weren't born in, but it's hard to take an international tournament seriously when the national jersey can be so easily discarded. What good is it if an Australian puts on Tonga jersey if he's not prepared to play for them again over the next 4 years? The international rules essentially say there's no commitment needed, which in the end does nothing to help those nations develop.

The biggest problem I have is that the Rugby League community isn't honest with itself when it comes to its international scene, there hasn't been the investment internationally to produce enough players to make a competitive tournament. There is genuine growth happening, but it's slow, and the vast majority of the domestic players in those developing countries do not have the expertise or proper coaching to play against the likes of Australia or England. Rugby League has always chosen quick fix solutions and has rarely ever thought long term. They had 30 years head start on the Rugby World Cup and did nothing with it because Rugby League has always been a club game first at its core, not an international game.

Posts: 116
Joined: Tue, 05 Jul 2016, 04:18
National Flag:
United StatesUnited States

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby eal22 » Tue, 24 Oct 2017, 00:21

thatrugbyguy raises good points. The eligibility rules do need work, I have always thought players need to pick a country for at least a four year cycle.

Posts: 1032
Joined: Sun, 18 May 2014, 13:27
National Flag:
AustraliaAustralia

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby Working Class Rugger » Tue, 24 Oct 2017, 00:53

eal22 wrote:
Working Class Rugger wrote:
eal22 wrote:There are indeed a number of Aussie, Kiwis, and Englishmen filling out the other teams, but many of these countries do have growing RL scenes. France is completely homegrown, and PNG is a hotbed of League. Wales and Lebanon are quite developed locally, Ireland are working hard, and the USA (along with Canada - see the Toronto Wolfpack) are seeing quite a bit of growth in the code. Scotland on the other hand are a completely bogus team. Fiji, Samoa, Tonga produce a lot of players but end up getting the leftovers from whoever doesn't get selected for Australia/NZ, although a few Kiwis have defected to Tonga.

While not perfect, this tournament will certainly be a festival of Rugby League, and Rugby Union is hardly innocent when it comes to teams borrowing from other countries.


France having a homegrown team is far from shocking as they've had something resembling a national league since before WW2. They're still rubbish.


One has to remember that Rugby Union sided with the fascist Vichy regime to outlaw rugby league in France and all grounds, equipment, and money were confiscated from RL and given to RU. The value of assets stripped amounted to 2 million 1940 Francs. RL in France has never been offered reparations by Union either I should add. Some things to keep in mind before proclaiming French rugby league as rubbish.

Regarding north american growth, the Toronto Wolfpack are getting crowds of 7,000+ whilst playing in the English third division. Name me any rugby union team in North America getting weekly crowds of 7,000 - unless you think the Australian mining magnates are flying the spectators in from Kalgoorlie?


You are aware that French Rugby League recovered to be a force throughout the 50s and 60s. And the early 70s. The stagnation come after this period.

Also, a lot of those assets found their way to RL after the French Rugby team was banned by the then 4 Nations before WW2. Not condoning the Vichy involvement (I will not they banned all pro sports) but the rot isn't solely because of that. But hey, keep clinging to that.

Not disputing the Wolfpacks crowds (though I've seen it mentioned on the Canadian thread that they've been given a lot of tickets away) but how does it help RL in Canada with a team full of mercenaries running about primarily based in England.

Posts: 2844
Joined: Thu, 17 Apr 2014, 02:51
Location: São Paulo
National Flag:
BrazilBrazil

Re: Rugby League World Cup 2017

Postby victorsra » Tue, 24 Oct 2017, 01:21

RL would have a genuine WC with just 8 teams
Brazilian Rugby News: www.portaldorugby.com.br

Next

Return to Rugby Forum

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot] and 9 guests