GEORGIA RUGBY LEAGUE NATION OVERVIEW
Foundation Year – 2004
International Team – Georgia Rugby League
Highest finish in World Cup – Two wins World Cup Qualifiers (2008)
Top level domestic competition – In 2006 Georgia had 3 teams competing in a domestic rugby league competition.
History – Georgian’s have been involved with Rugby League since the early 1990’s. In 1993 Georgia had a team participating in the Russian Rugby League Championship. Georgia were not officially recognised by the Rugby League European Federation until much later. Georgian delegates attended their first ever Rugby League European Federation meeting in London in February 2005. This meeting would go onto kick start Georgia’s official involvement with Rugby League under the umbrella of the Georgia Rugby 13 Federation.
In July 2005 Georgia qualified for the European Nations Cup for the first time by beating Serbia and the Netherlands in European qualifiers. In the Pool rounds of the European Nations Cup, Georgia struggled to handle the step up in competition. Georgia bowed out of their first European Nations Cup losing to Russia and France by large margins.
In 2006 Georgia showed steady improvement by winning two of its World Cup qualifying games. In a huge boost for the game in Georgia, over ten thousand fans packed Locomotive Stadium, Tbilisi to see Georgia beat Netherlands 57- 16. The game was also shown live on national Georgian Television.
In Georgia’s next qualifying game they travelled to Belgrade, to play Serbia. Georgia won the game comfortably all but confirming a place in the second round of European leg of the 2008 World Cup qualifiers.
Since this high point in Georgian Rugby League things have gone downhill. They forfeit the last Rugby League World Cup qualifying game (Europe Round 1) against Russia. Apparently this was due to visa issues. It was later rumoured that the same team were also involved in the qualifying process for the Rugby Union World Cup. The Rugby League European Federation released the European rankings in January 2008. Georgia were unable to retain a place amongst the 16 listed nations.
Dear Readers, If you have first hand knowledge of the current Rugby League situation in Georgia we would love to hear from you. Please email us at: [email protected] or join our international rugby league Forums at http://forums.rugbyleagueplanet.com and let us all know what’s going on in your part of the world.
GEORGIA INTERNATIONAL RUGBY LEAGUE RESULTS
2006 Rugby League Results
Jun Russia 0 – Georgia 0 (Georgia forfeit World Cup Qualifier)
May 26th Georgia 57 – Netherlands 16 (World Cup Qualifier)
May 13th Georgia 45 – Serbia 10 (World Cup Qualifier)
Feb 4th Georgia 46 – Russia 19
2005 Rugby League Results
Oct 30th France 60 – Georgia 0 (European Nations Cup)
Oct 23rd Russia 48 – Georgia 14 (European Nations Cup)
Jul 24th Georgia 44 – Serbia 12 (European Nations Qualifier)
Apr 29th Georgia 34 – Netherlands 14 (European Nations Qualifier)