AUSTRALIA TO HOST ENGLAND FOR WHEELCHAIR RUGBY LEAGUE TEST SERIES
The England Wheelchair Rugby League representative team will visit Australia this October for a test match series, to be played at venues across New South Wales and Queensland.
Currently No. 2 in world rankings, England will make their second visit down under, after previously playing the Australian team and taking home the Wheelchair Rugby League World Cup in 2008.
Wheelchair Rugby League Australia chairman, Martin Meredith, welcomed the news of the England team’s visit commenting “this is a great opportunity for the Wheelaroos to play one of their key competitors in the lead up to 2021 World Cup. The visit will also help raise the profile of Wheelchair Rugby League in Australia as we continue our campaign to build the sport and provide opportunity for people with disability across a number of Australian states”.
Martin Coyd OBE, Chair of Wheelchair Rugby League in England and Manager of the England Wheelchair Rugby League Team, believes that many in the team are looking forward to the trip, commenting, “for many, the trip to Australia is an incredible, once in a lifetime experience where they can play the sport they love and do their best to represent people back home.
There is a great rivalry between our countries and the time I have spent with the Aussies so far has been amazing. I can’t wait to bring the team to Australia later this year”.
Coyd also said that the test series was very much part of the lead up to the 2021 Rugby League World Cup, to be held in England, where Wheelchair Rugby League will take equal ranking alongside the men’s and women’s game for the first time.
Star player and English Captain Jack Brown will make his second visit to Australia after eleven years. It is Brown’s story that highlights the true equality of the sport, as an able-bodied athlete playing alongside his brother Harry who had his legs amputated because of meningitis.
The test series will be held during October across proposed venues in Townsville, Sydney, Brisbane and Wollongong.
Media Contact: Joanne Ryan, Infodec Communications, 0421 059 866
How is Wheelchair Rugby League played?
This fast-paced game is played on an indoor court, about half the size of rugby league field. It follows a five-on-five format, using a rugby league football. A kick is achieved by a clenched fist and a tackle is achieved by removing a Velcro tag from the sleeve of an attacking player. The game can be played socially and there are defined player pathways to representative level.
The game allows up to 2 able bodied athletes per team, meaning that members of families and mates can play alongside their siblings and friends.
Wheelchair Rugby League is an inclusive sport – a variation of the running game allowing athletes with disabilities to compete with and against able-bodied people. The emphasis is on the participation, health and well-being of individuals, personal performance, social interaction and self- esteem.
Wheelchair Rugby League aspires to provide an inclusive recreational activity and to promote fun, fitness and self-development while fostering good sportsmanship in a safe and positive environment.
See the Wheelchair Rugby League for more: here
Wheelchair Rugby League Ambassadors are Brett Kimmorley and James Tamou.