The GB Pioneers
The GB Pioneers were formed in 2005 and is Rugby League squad made predominantly from students that travels to new up and coming countries to help in their development of Rugby League, to help pioneer the way forward for them. The Pioneers made their inaugural tour in 2005 to Estonia and have had successful development tours to the Czech Republic, Latvia, Ukraine, Norway, Kazakhstan, Greece and last year to Poland. Each country has gone on to develop and play rugby league domestically and internationally at varying degrees all thanks to the work and help of the Pioneers.
Since those visits each country has played games against a variety of teams and each continues to do so as rugby league international competition grows throughout Europe and now Asia. The majority of these countries now play their own local competition which is governed by the Rugby League European Federation. The Student Rugby League is proud of the contribution the Pioneers have made.
Squad members are ambassadors for their University, Country and their sport. Selection criteria considers not only their ability to play the game to a very high standard but players must have a proven track record in undertaking Rugby League development activity.
Selection alone is recognition of the individual’s contribution to the game. Members join a select group of individuals – the ‘Pioneers’. There is satisfaction from knowing you have created a ‘first’.