The Western Cape Sports Council recently accepted the Western Cape Rugby League association as a member. Elton Davids of the Western Cape Sports Council commented: â€WP Sports Council is excited to have WP Rugby League as part of it’s membership. Sports Council’s are duty bound to acknowledge various codes, recognize their positive role in society while contributing to making this ‘an active and winning nationâ€.
The Western Cape has a rich rugby league history, having hosted Russia as well as the Brisbane Broncoâ€™s in the past and having a vibrant club structure that plays regular games. â€œThis is an important step in the path for SARL to get recognition from SASCOC, and the Western Cape Rugby League Association is proud to be the first province to get accreditation. The sport has grown in leaps and bounds in the Western Cape and provides players from all walks of life to meet on the field and compete.â€ says Denzil Watson, Chairmen of WPRLA.
Several students from the WPRLA has been selected for the National Student Team to participate in the 2013 Rugby League Student World Cup in Leeds, United Kingdom, later this year and the Assistant Coach for the team also comes from Cape Town, showing the potential for the game in the Western Cape.
Kobus Botha, President of SARL, was very pleased to announce this significant milestone, adding that: â€œSARL is busy working closely with all the provincial sporting associations to get recognition as the sport has a rich and diverse history and offers South Africans more opportunities to participate internationally for their country.â€
This is part of the process that SARL is currently following to get official recognition for the sport in South Africa. Although played internationally at the highest level, and being one of the oldest professional sporting codes in the world, rugby league has been facing stiff political opposition to getting recognized by the South African Sports Commonwealth and Olympic Committee.