By Phil Caplan, Date: 4/10/12
Following the formation of the first club in Republika Srpska, the Serbian enclave in Bosnia and Herzegovina, a second has been formed in the city of Novi Grad, named New Thunder RLFC.
Three coaches from the area took part in the Serbian Rugby League Federation Level 1 course in the middle of August, with them then overseeing the first ever domestic rugby league game in the Republic of Srpska and Bosnia and Herzegovina at Novi Gradâ€™s Mlakve stadium, home of FC Sloboda Novi Grad.
Dimitris Dajc refereed the game watched by around 300 curious locals, between New Thunder and the splendidly named White Rabbits, with the home team winning 28-20 in a very competitive game despite the visitorâ€™s greater experience.
Jovan Vujosevic, RLEF Central and East Europe director, is delighted with the progress being made. â€œThis is huge step for rugby league in Europe,â€ he said. â€œWe put a new country on the European rugby league map. The next objective is the formation of a third club in Bosnia and Herzegovina and a Rugby League Federation of the Republic of Srpska, followed by the formation of the Bosnia and Herzegovina Rugby League Federation as a final step.â€
â€œSerbia will help a lot in the development of the game in this area and we also hope that after Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Greece, other Balkan countries will follow suit.â€