As part of the second Middle East Africa Championship, to be held in Lagos, Nigeria in early October, the first regional coaching and match official courses will take place during that week. Led by RLEF coach educators Martin Crick and Phil Smith, they will be assisted by Lebanon’s Nayef abi Said.
The newly designed level 1 courses will be delivered alongside the identification and mentoring of educator candidates for the region.
According to Ghana’s Jafaru Mustapha, who’s nation will make their international debut in the tournament: “The courses will set us on the path of making Ghana a rugby league country, with learning the right coaching technique and application of the law.” Whilst for Burundi president Jean de Christ Rusiga: “Our participation is the fulfilment of many years of work and sacrifice from numerous people. It’s more than a recognition of our capacity to develop the game, we will be able to transmit locally the expert knowledge gained and expect to reap big rewards.”
Ade Adebisi, vice chairman and general manager of the Nigerian hosts, noted: “We welcome the chance to showcase Nigeria to the rugby league community by staging not just the games but the courses alongside. It will be fantastic to meet with so many like-minded individuals who are filled with the same vision and drive to grow the sport on the global stage. This event will form a key part of the Nigeria Rugby League Association’s plan for growth in 2019.”
Designated coaches and match officials are part of the requirement for nations to be accorded affiliate membership status of the RLEF and International Federation.