Nine of the 17 that clinched a berth in next year’s World Cup are included in the 17-man Lebanon squad which faces Cook Islands at Belmore this Sunday.
By Phil Caplan, Date:24/10/13
As the 2013 Rugby League World Cup gets underway, two fledgling nations will also take their first steps in battle on Sunday in their Test match debuts and with an eye on qualifying for the 2017 global extravaganza.
By Rich Cowley, Date: 30/11/17 (Photo Credit NRLPhotos)
Fijian Rugby League came of age during the 2017 Rugby League World Cup tournament. The Bati captured the public's imagination not only back in Fiji but across the rugby league world.
Russia maintained their unbeaten start to the competition with a testing win in rain-sodden Naro-Fominsk.
Conditions were tough throughout with the game played in a relentless downpour, the Bears making the perfect start when Mikhail Nisiforov and Kiril Kosharin exchanged passes down the left on a 50 metre break, , Kosharin sliding over in the first minute, Aleksandr Lysokon converting.
Italy went to the top of the table after winning the battle of the previously unbeaten nations but were pushed all the way by the Russians, both sides scoring three tries.
What undid the Bears in the closing stages was their indiscipline, conceding three kickable penalties and nine in the second half in total culminating in the late sin binning of Anatoly Grigorev for dissent, and the dismissal of Ruslan Izmailov after the whistle for his protestations to referee Tom Mather.