Rugby League at the Commonwealth Games

There was a Rugby League Nines tournament, the Commonwealth Rugby League Championship, played in 2014 and 2018, events endorsed by the Commonwealth Games Federation, but not listed as official demonstration sports. Rugby League Nines is a shortened version of Rugby League played with nine players on each team.

2014 Commonwealth Rugby League Championship

The inaugural tournament involved men's U19 teams from eight nations, with Australia represented by the Sydney Roosters SG Ball Competition Premiers. The tournament was played over two days, 27 and 28 June 2014 at Broadwood Stadium Glasgow. Papua New Guinea was undefeated, beating Australia 22-8 in the final. Wales took the bronze medal, ahead of Canada 20-8. The other placings were Scotland, England, Jamaica then South Africa.



2018 Commonwealth Rugby League Championship

The 2018 tournament was held at the Dolphin Stadium in Moreton Bay, Queensland on 23 and 24 February. The event featured eight men's teams (Australia, Fiji, Scotland, Wales, England, PNG, Samoa, Tonga), six women's teams (Australia, Fiji, Samoa, Canada, Cook Islands, Tonga) and three physical disability teams (Australia, New Zealand and Commonwealth All Stars).

The men's tournament was an under-23 competition (the age increased from U19 in 2014), while there were no age restrictions for the women's and disabled teams.

The tournament was dominated by Australia, who won all three competitions.

Future Tournaments?

The plan was for Rugby League Nines to be an open-age event at the Commonwealth Games in 2022, but world events messing with the World Cup fixture and changes to inclusion guidelines for Commonwealth Games sports meant that getting Nines into the Commonwealth Games was not pursued. Going forward, it will be hard to break into the program, considering the similar sport of Rugby 7s is so popular and successful.



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