RUGBY LEAGUE: Toa New Zealand Residents set to tour Samoa

Some locally based players

APIA: FRIDAY 16 NOVEMBER 2012: Toa Samoa’s Rugby League World Cup preparations continue to gain momentum with the upcoming NZ Residents tour of Samoa. The fixture, to be held on Saturday 24 November at Apia Park, will be the first of a two-leg series between the Toa NZ Residents and the Toa Samoa Residents teams.

The test series forms an integral part of Toa Samoa’s World Cup preparations, with three to five players to be selected for inclusion in the RLWC’13 squad. Samoa was chosen to host the series in an executive decision endorsed by Rugby League Samoa President Tagaloalagi Fa’afouina Su’a.

Game two of the series is scheduled to take place in March on a date to be confirmed. The game will take place before World Cup eligibility registration is due, to give each and every Samoan player a fair chance for selection. Rugby League Samoa executives continue to work tirelessly to secure sponsors for not only the RLWC’13 campaign, but also for another Residents Test to take place.

Played in either Samoa or overseas in the lead up to the World Cup, the test will be an opportunity to recognise the athletes who miss out on selection.

Players eligible for the RLWC’13 squad will be drawn from rugby league competitions in Samoa, New Zealand, Australia and the UK, proving the talent of Samoan rugby league players reaches worldwide and ensuring international exposure for potential sponsors.

Former Toa Samoa captain, Rugby League Samoa Technical Director and Australian Chapter boss Leaupepe Nigel Vagana, is diligently working on securing sponsors eager to support the game of rugby league from the grassroots levels in Samoa to the world stage.

Rugby League Samoa continues to celebrate the growth of grassroots rugby league with the winners from the Teuila 9s tournament to
compete in the curtain raisers for the Residents Tests. Four teams will participate in two games – the first between Nuuausala College and Pesega College and the main curtain raiser between Robert Louis Stevenson School and Leulumoega College.

The Residents tournament will provide the young players an opportunity to showcase their skills in front of a large crowd as well experience rugby league at an elite level.