U.S. Aiming To Build Rugby League World Cup Legacy Before Hosting in '25
Super League side Leeds Rhinos and U.S. rugby league side Hawks coach Brian McDermott wants his U.S. club to "create a legacy" ahead of the country hosting the Rugby League World Cup, according to Laine Clark of the AAP. The U.S.'s "surprise" '13 quarterfinal appearance led to McDermott "slamming the former Hawks side for not creating a legacy" before hosting the '25 tournament. The Hawks "loaded up on Australians four years ago," with just seven players technically based in the U.S. in its "22-strong squad" in '13. With "momentum building" behind a N.Y.-based team entering the English competition in '19, McDermott believed "it was now up to his current Hawks side to raise the profile of the sport" in the U.S. before it hosts the tournament in eight years. McDermott said that it was tempting to "fiddle with passports" and name Australian-based players for this year's tournament, which kicks off on Friday night, but "believed it would defeat the Hawks' purpose." He said, "We could have done something different in picking a squad which would create more headlines but what legacy would it leave for us -- it would be limited" (AAP, 10/22).