The Wales Rugby League student side are looking to raise £100,000 for them to travel to Australia for the Student Rugby League World Cup next year.
The tournament, which is due to take place on July 5-17 in Sydney, is completely self-funded by the Wales players.
Wales Students are ranked in the top four in the world and have reached the semi-finals of the last two World Cup tournaments.
For over 25 years, many Wales Student internationals have gone on to become professional players and full Wales internationals so tournaments like this are important for Rugby League in Wales.
And with the Rugby Football League confirming this month that they are withdrawing their £70,000 annual support to WRL for junior development at the end of 2017, it is even more essential that funds are raised to send our students to the World Cup.
Wales Students team manager Mark Jones said: “The whole trip is completely funded by the players with each player contributing £3000+ to represent their country. Wales Students got to the semi-finals in the 2013 World Cup and our goal is to win it in 2017. Please help us achieve this goal.”
To donate, please go to https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/wales-students-world-cup.
Wales Students are holding two big development days in December following a successful trials day last Sunday in South Wales.
On Sunday 11th December, the first of the public fundraisers for the World Cup takes place with the South Wales University Challenge Day at The Wern in Merthyr Tydfil, the new home of the newly rebranded South Wales Ironmen.
The action starts at 1pm where University of South Wales take on Aberystwyth University before Cardiff Metropolitan University take on Swansea University at 3pm.
The players will be looking to not only impress Wales selectors, but also the South Wales Ironmen staff, as many students have gone on to play for the area’s only professional side. Admission for supporters is £5 with all profits going towards the Wales Students’ World Cup fund.
Then on Sunday 18th December, a full day’s training session will take place at Deeside Leisure Centre, the official training home of Wales’ international sides.
Last Sunday, Wales Students have had a very successful trials day in Llantwit Major and head coach Latham Tawhai was impressed with the talent on show.
“It was a really good turn out,” he said. “There were players we’d not seen in the Wales set-up before and those we had seen and indeed already played for Wales.
“We had a mix of youth and experience and I feel an improved standard on last year. We’ll look at a lot of them in the mini-series in December and then tick a training squad to go forward to the next session in Deeside on December 18th. We’ll look at that same group in January with a view to working towards cutting the squad to 30 players.
“Student Rugby League is always self-funded. We get the kit from Wales Rugby League but everything else, is up to us as a squad and from kind donations from sponsors, supporters, family, friends and well-wishers. Please donate what you can and help the future of Rugby League in Wales, club and country. Some of these players will hopefully go on to play for Ironmen if they’re in the south or Crusaders in the north, as well as maybe winning full Welsh honours. We are an important development tool for the future of the game in Wales.”
Sunday 11th December 2016, The Wern, Merthyr Tydfil
Game 1: University of South Wales v Aberystwyth University (kick-off 1pm)
Game 2: Cardiff Metropolitan University v Swansea University (kick-off 3pm)
Admission £5 with all profits going towards Wales Students’ World Cup campaign fund.