Spain and Serbia to clash in Valencia

Spain and Serbia will play each other for the first time this autumn, as both teams warm up for their World Cup qualifiers.

The game will take place at Quatre Carreres, Valencia, on September 24, kick off 5pm.

Spain coach Darren Fisher will use the game to develop some of his players’ experience.

“We are really pleased we have secured this match, it will be a pleasure to welcome Serbia to Spain as we both put our preparations together for the World Cup Qualifiers in October,” he said.

“We have a very good relationship with the Serbian players and staff and it’s great to finally play one another in what promises to be a great contest.

“We know the Serbians will be very physical and well-organised and it is ideal for us to get used to that style as we get set to face the highest standard in our short history.

“For me it’s a great opportunity to select a domestically-based squad and give them a test at the level required for the qualifiers, I’ll be giving several debuts to new players and it will be exciting to see how well they contribute.”

Serbian Rugby League Federation general secretary Slobodan Mank is also relishing the challenge, especially as the Serbs will be coached by new man Ljubomir Bukvic.

Darren Higgins has stepped down as coach of the Serbian team recently.

“We are very glad that Spain answered our call for this match,” said Mank.

“We want to prepare as best as we can because we have high hopes to qualify for the next World Cup and it will be a good test for our boys to see where we stand now.

“We regret Darren is no longer coach of the national team because he could not fit his professional and personal commitments together with the obligations needed for the Serbian national side.

“We thank Darren for all he had done to raise the standard and wish him all the best in the future, he has put in some long lasting structures which we will benefit from.

“Serbian Rugby League is in talks with potential candidates for the position and we hope that we can announce his replacement soon.”

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