Bougainville league to expand, set to run 9s tourney

Sports

THE Autonomous Region of Bougainville Rugby League is set to expand in 2019.
President Avis Vanua said Bougainville rugby league would create two more leagues this season which will see more talent reached in a wider catchment area.
“The new leagues will be the Arawa Rugby league from the Central Bougainville district and North Country League from North Bougainville district,” Vanua said.
“These two new leagues are being started because there is more teams that we can handle in one competition.”
Vanua said the Buka league has eight clubs with three divisions.
“Rugby league in the region is becoming strong and popular. The sport has come a long way since the crisis and that kept a lot of talented players from the field and we are building up the province.”
Vanua said the league was humbled by a visit last year of PNGRFL chairman Sandis Tsaka and PNG NRLC manager Stanley Hondina and showed that Bougainville was in the league’s national plan.
Vanua added that the league could use the assistance of the province’s local MPs.
“This year our competitions will be challenging but the sport gaining popularity in their year they would have their referendum on independence (in June).
“Our pre-season starts next week and season kicks off next month.
“I have development programmes for rugby league in the region and we’ll incorporate the important date on the calendar with a Referendum 9s tournament involving teams from Buka, Arawa and Buin.

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