As rugby league grows exponentially around the world, one of the key factors in ensuring the sport becomes well-known in any country, is to gain officialdom from the Rugby League European Federation and for Hungary and Saudi Arabia, they have now been given that luxury – after they were given Observer Status by the RLEF and their Board of Directors.
Hungary, who only began playing rugby league in 2011 on the back of stellar work from former Scottish student Adam Nunn, now have four teams in their competition, all of which will contest the inaugural Hungarian Cup.
When he heard of the news, Zsolt Haboczki, the HRLF Director, said that the process has been a long one but it is the start of something special for rugby league in Hungary.
â€œItâ€™s good weâ€™ve reached a point which is the end of a process but also the start of a road engraved with lot of work,” said Haboczki.
For the Saudis, they started their rugby league trap of online casino tenure in 2008, after three school teachers introduced the sport in Jeddah at the U14 & U16 level, with the initial response from the Saudi people exceeding expectations.
The game has grown in Saudi Arabia, with the Select Schools side, ‘the Camels’ now a participant in all MENA Championships at every age category.
The process was complicated in Saudi Arabia, however, with official recognition requiring the endorsement from the royal family, which was a main reason as to why the Saudi rugby league community had not sought recognition from the RLEF previously.
Someone who has been there since the start and is now the SARLA lead Chair, one David Kinkead, says he is delighted that Saudi Arabia have been given observer status.
â€œOn behalf of the Saudi Arabian Rugby League Association, I am delighted to now receive Observer status of the RLEF,â€ said SARLA chair David Kinkead.
â€œRugby league has been played constantly in the kingdom for five years with an evolving schools championship.â€