World Cup wash-up
Hullo again. I'm back in the country after taking a scandalously long time to wander back from the Rugby League World Cup. Thanks, by the way, to all those colleagues who took delight in phoning my home and saying "He's where? I've been on that and I've been home for three weeks." Talk about puerile humour.
I was expecting to come back amid a raging inquest over what went wrong in Australia. Maybe it's the approach of Christmas, but it has been ominously quiet. Almost as if nothing went wrong – which, as you know, is very definitely not the case.
Under the circumstances, it was a relief to see that Sport England has stumped up an increased grant for the next four years. Although that is specifically for mass participation rather than elite performance, the two things are linked. We are never going to get much better unless we can increase the numbers playing the game. Given that we no longer automatically get first pick of young sportsmen in the heartlands, that means producing more from outside the M62 corridor. There will be some colourful new additions in the national leagues next season with the news that Sheffield and Hunslet have each signed two Papua New Guineans. That has to be good for the clubs and for the development of PNG.
I'm expecting some more signings by Super League clubs and if there's one player I'd love to see over here it would be the Fijian winger, Akuila Ueta – the most exciting prospect I've seen for a long time.Tagged in: akuila ueta, hunslet, png, rugby league, sheffield, Sport, Sports, world cup. super league
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