English town ready to welcome Samoans
The town of Doncaster in northern England in the United Kingdom is gearing up to play host to the Toa Samoa squad, when it descends on the township for the 2021 Rugby League World Cup in October-November next year.
The Doncaster RLFC Chief Executive Carl Hall told local newspaper Doncaster Free Press that Toa Samoa will use the township as their training base for the RLWC and he is elated that the town is playing host.
"I'm delighted that we'll be hosting Samoa,” said Hall. “For me it’s a personal thing, Samoa are very close to me because I was brought up by a Samoan family. I'm really looking forward to welcoming the team to Doncaster.
"Hopefully Doncaster will become Samoan for the tournament and help the team not feel homesick. I think the people of the town will embrace it. I know the management and the players of the Samoan team will embrace Doncaster.”
"All along we've spoken about wanting this World Cup to leave a legacy in this town - Samoa are going to be in our town for three weeks and I'm sure the people of Doncaster will never forget it."
According to the Doncaster Free Press, the Keepmoat Stadium will host three RLWC matches at next year’s tournament.
Jon Dutton, RLWC2021 chief executive, said: “Doncaster is a fantastic town with a passionate sporting fanbase, who have shown great support for RLWC2021 since it was announced they would play host in 2021.
“With the Samoan men’s side impending arrival in Doncaster, this is another thing for the community to get excited about as we continue to countdown.
“Our refreshed tournament identity and nation base announcement can serve as an exciting reminder for the people of Doncaster of what’s to come in 2021 as we continue to build momentum towards what promises to be the biggest and best Rugby League World Cup in history.”
According to the 2021RLWC website, teams from 21 nations will be based in different parts of England. The cities and towns are as follows: Bolton – France (men); Doncaster – Samoa (men); Hull – Fiji (men); Leeds – Jamaica, Ireland (men), England (women), PNG (women), Brazil (women), Canada (women); Liverpool and St Helens – Tonga, Italy (men); London – England, Australia, Norway, Spain (wheelchair); Manchester and Trafford – England, Australia (men); Newcastle – Scotland (men); Preston – Wales (men); Sheffield – Greece (men), France (wheelchair), Wales (wheelchair), Scotland (wheelchair) and USA (wheelchair); Tees Valley – Cook Islands (men); Warrington – PNG (men); Wigan/Leigh – Lebanon (men); and York – New Zealand (men), Australia (women), New Zealand (women), France (women), and Cook Islands (women).