The Wales National Rugby League team trained for the first time at Deeside Leisure Centre yesterday in the beginning of an exciting 25 year partnership between Wales Rugby League and Flintshire County Council, which will provide an elite training facility for the National squads along with supporting the development of the North Wales age group squads.
The squad includes players from the North Wales Crusaders including Iwan Brown, Owain Brown, Christiaan Roets and Kriss Wilkes, along with former Argoed High School Pupil, Rhys Williams, now with the Warrington Wolves in the Superleague.
This Wednesday will be the squad’s first get together as they prepare for their International v France on June 16, the game being held at the Glyndwr University Racecourse Stadium.
Matt Hayes, Sports Development Manager for Flintshire County Council said, ”This is an exciting development for Deeside Leisure Centre and the sport of Rugby League and through attracting high quality players and facilities to Flintshire we will grow Rugby League in the area and also ensure that we increase overall participation in Sport. Over the coming years we will be doing all that we can to support the growth and development of the game along with providing a platform for elite performance”
Sian Williams, Facility Manager for Deeside Leisure Centre said ” The management team and staff here at Deeside Leisure Centre are extremely proud of our partnership with Wales Rugby League and have been impressed with their vision and aspirations to get every child hooked on sport. We feel that it is yet another new development which will help us to raise the standard of leisure provision and diversity of leisure opportunities for the people of Flintshire.
“Having the Wales Internationals training here is a privilege and something we hope to accommodate on many other occasions. This will undoubtedly help us increase participation in our proposed touch rugby leagues and U18s regional team, as well as showcase all of our new facilities including our Extreme, Gym, 3G pitches and the first public day spa in Wales – Afon Spa.”
Wales head coach Iestyn Harris said: “We are delighted to be training at the excellent facilities at Deeside Leisure Centre. Here at Wales Rugby League, we are keen to spread the game throughout the country and use the best possible training facilities. Linking up with Deeside Leisure Centre is a further step to establishing a first class base in North Wales that our international sides can be proud of. We are looking forward to Wales v France at The Glyndwr University Racecourse Stadium on Saturday 16 June and we know that this partnership with Deeside Leisure Centre will be a massive help for us in our preparations.”
Tickets are now on sale, priced from £8 for adults and £4 concessions at www.walesrugbyleague.co.uk.
Meanwhile, Flintshire will hopefully have their own rugby league side up and running soon, with a taster session getting the ball rolling on Monday 21th May.
The session will start at 6pm on Monday 21st May at Deeside Leisure Centre and everyone is welcome, including any volunteers who would like to get involved with this exciting new club.
If you require any further information please contact Matt Pritchard at firstname.lastname@example.org