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Rugby League Deutschland has announced that the groundbreaking Germany versus Austria match will be played at the Nonner Stadion, Bad Reichenhall, on Sunday 25th June. The match will be sponsored by Alpenstoff Bier.
The inaugural match between the two central European neighbours will coincide with an RLEF-sponsored match officials training course, targeting candidates from both sides of the border. "This is a great boost for us," said German official Simon Cooper. "We are aiming for 150 people for the Germany v Austria game as rugby of either code is unknown here in this part of Germany."
"Uwe Jansen will be soon going into Schools in the Heidelberg and Heilbronn area to get youngsters playing the game. We also have a school near Stuttgart wanting to play as well." Cooper, who revealed that Germany is hoping to host a rugby league youth festival next year, has managed to provide the school with Rugby League World magazine each month as well as a rule book, rugby balls, DVDs and coaching aids.
Rugby League Deutschland polo shirts and T-shirts are now available from www.forty-twenty.co.uk, with the organisation's commission reinvested into the further development of the sport in Germany.
"In August we celebrate our second year," continued Cooper, "and we feel we have made reasonable progress although there is a lot more we need to do. We would like to thank all those that have helped us in some way whether it be sending DVDs of games to me to pass on or by sending money, buying our products or wishing us the best. It can be very hard sometimes and often you feel 'why am I bothering' but we stick at it and we hope to reap the rewards."