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Was rugby league ever played in Moldova?

Discussion in 'International' started by Big Bunny, Mar 3, 2004.

  1. Big Bunny

    Big Bunny Juniors

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    Was rugby league ever played in Moldova?

    Despite a team bearing the Moldovan name having taken part in the 1995 Emerging Nations Cup, I am unsure if any teams were actually based in the region. I raise this surreal issue and choose the term “region” because of the simple fact that former USSR Rugby League champions Tiraspol were based in the Republic of Transnistria and not Moldova.

    Transnistria is a nation now celebrating its 10th year of independence. No nations officially recognize the country, even though it does share close ties to Russia and its military. When Russia recently suggested that Moldova and Transnistria unite in a new federation, the Moldovans wanted no part of it due to Transnistria being a rogue nation under the control of a corrupt leadership and being the most likely source of black-market nuclear weapons for future forms of terrorism. Depending on which side of the fence the RRL is dealing with, should they even be considering expanding to an area that their own government won’t officially recognize?
     
  2. yakstorm

    yakstorm Bench

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    Hmm once again the question of whether or not sport and poltics should be mixed. On one hand you could say it was a fantastic move by the RRL to have teams from Tatarstan, and even setup a Tatarstan rep side, as despite the government not recognising them as much more than a state, the Tatarstanian people have long felt there were independent from Russia.

    The result of allowing Tatarstan a chance to show some form of independence and representation on the international scene has seen the region government helping to fund League, and it is only one of three sports in the region officially recognised.

    Now unfortunately Transnistria is very much a different basket of fish. It does have a lot of problems in regards to being a rouge state, and not being officially recognised in the world, however on the other hand this desire to show independence could result well in terms of media interest and even in terms of crowds. Its like the Georgia V Russia scenario, you could put a game of marbles on in the middle of the stadium, and still get 60,000 to the game cause of the rivalry between the sides.
     
  3. griff

    griff Bench

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    Very interesting issue Big Bunny. I must confess I had never heard of Transnistria, although knew a little bit about the ethnic Romanian v ethnic Russian conflict in Moldova.

    According to the international community the area claiming to be the state of Transnistria is part of Moldova, so therefore Rugby League was played in Moldova.

    Where this differs from Tatarstan is that the Tatars are a separate nation with thousands of years of history, whereas Transnistria was only a puppet state created by the Nazis in WWII. The current state owes more to gangsters seeking a place to go about their business and the Russians not wanting to lose their rights to the ethnic Romanian majority rather than any independent history.

    I'd keep well clear of any Transnistrian rep teams. Players from there could always represent Russia.
     
  4. Big Bunny

    Big Bunny Juniors

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    That's the curious part though; everyone outside the region says its part of Moldova, but the Moldovan government doesn't want anything to do with them. I must admit, when I first heard about it... I could have sworn it was a joke. That's the last thing I'd name a country.

    "The duchy of grand lapin" now that sounds a lot better.
     
  5. hgfds

    hgfds Juniors

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    Its amazing how a small region and city can seperate themselves from the international community for so long surely this cant last .Soccer has no problem associating themselves with sheriff and using their stadiums so a smaller sport like league should have lesser problems,certainly an eventual comp based around the black sea would have great benefits for league, i reckon they should go for it.
     
  6. griff

    griff Bench

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    That's what I thought - it has to be fake with a name like that.

    It's funny, if there was a James Bond movie set in Transnistria, an obscure former Soviet Republic run by a network of cronies and gangsters who build sports stadiums, you wouldn't believe it.
     
  7. russ13

    russ13 First Grade

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    BB

    If you read Dave Hadfield's book 'XIII Worlds' (published 1996) you will find a chapter written by Neil Tunnicliffe. In this chapter he discribes a journey he had with executive RL Development Officer Tom O' Donavan to Moldovia.

    Suffice to say the trip was very interesting & they watched a game in which Moldovia played a Tartarstan team. He commented as follows:

    "...for their part Moldovia ran some neat patterns, held their shape well and indeed, would have been picked out as a rugby league team in any identity parade. But defences on both sides was woeful, the tackling frail as choux pastry...Moldovia cantered to the line as 40-11 victors."

    The crowd was given as 3000 although Neil suggested it was closer to 300.

    The book does not disclose the date of the trip but I have a feeling it must have been in 1993 or 1994.

    He also made an interesting observation:

    "... in RL terms Moldova is effectively, Tiraspol, and Tiraspol was then effectively the Eolis corporation, a shifting chimera which was once major financial institution, oil company, retail outlet, chain of cimemas and what ever else it could turn its hand to. Its patronage permitted the Moldovian players to be nominally at least professional. In the same way Japanese RU incorporates commercial companies whose representative team who are stocked with workers who are employed in positions within those companies not necessarily because they are the best qualified but because they can play RU..."


    I have an ides that the Eolis Corporation has since imploded-this may have effected RL there.

    PS-if you can not get hold of a copy of the book, PM me & I will mail my copy to you.

    Apparently Phil Larder was their in 1991 to set up the code.
     
  8. Big Bunny

    Big Bunny Juniors

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    Cheers russ. I had been looking to add that book to my collection but as you know it's as rare as hens teeth now that it is out of print. No need to send a copy, but the offer is much appreciated. I did some work for a mate a while back and if I remember correctly that was one of the books on the list requested as payment anyway.

    I do recall hearing the Eolis name in regard to football before, but am unsure if it was a separate side in the early days of the Russian league to the actual Tiraspol side. Another possible example of there being more than one Moldovan/Transnistrian team is that in the early days of the World 7's the Russian team was represented not by their nation, but the club champions, which in one case was the Red Arrows club (1992). I don't know for certain if the club was based outside of Moscow, but a number of players in the team did play for Moldova in the Emerging Nations Cup.
     
  9. dimitri

    dimitri First Grade

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    so i guess the answer is

    YES

    RUgby League has been played in Moldova???
     
  10. Big Bunny

    Big Bunny Juniors

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    It doesn't really matter. The question was one based in rhetoric, in order to discuss just where rugby league in that area is headed. I suppose the region is going to be stable enough for now, at least until the US decides that the illegal arms trade there is too much of a problem to ignore. I also wonder if the place will also produce two international squads and if it does.. should Transnistria be officially recognized by the RLIF when neither the Australian or British governments do.
     
  11. screeny

    screeny Bench

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    Well if the RLIF recognise the Windies 'Federation' without the Windies authorities recognising it then why the hell not? Go Transnistria treize!
     
  12. Big Bunny

    Big Bunny Juniors

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    screeny, why are you so hung up on the Windies being a federation or not? Would you still be bagging the efforts if they were the WIRLO, A, C etc..? Regardless of their name, the group is making a lot of progress which you don't seem to want to acknowledge.
     
  13. Big Bunny

    Big Bunny Juniors

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    Mind you, the narrow use of the word federation that you have chosen to adopt as world gospel matters very little. A federation is defined primarily as a union of smaller organisations. It is helpful that one aligns itself to a greater sports body, like the IOC but it doesn't mean jack at the moment for what is a group in its infancy.
     
  14. joshreading

    joshreading Moderator Staff Member

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    There also is not joint west indies sporting body or goverment body to recognise anything
     
  15. screeny

    screeny Bench

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    Bunny, I am all for the progress the Windies lads are making. Really, believe me. I want RL to be played everywhere as it's my number one, my only, all consuming passion.

    However, I also want RL to go about things correctly and as an adult sport.

    A federation, in the sports usage of the word not in your dictionary definition variable, is associated with govt.

    I just wish the Windies lads would deal every step of the way with the Windies authorities, who ever they may be, to get permission for all this. Maybe they have, but if they have they haven't been public about it.

    It's a question of propriety and credibility.
     
  16. Jeffles

    Jeffles Bench

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    Recognition is important for funding issues. Hence I would have reservations about any body that would be unlikely to be recognised officially (case in point Transnistria). Thw WIRLF should make this a priority.
     
  17. JVinAZ

    JVinAZ Juniors

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    Cricket is an adult sport. The West Indies is a full member of the ICC and has been a test playing nation since 1926, being established as the same date as NZ.

    IT is a mistake to corelate sports and govenment entities. Puerto Rico competes in the Olympics, even though it is part of the US. An athlete from Northern Ireland, depending on the the sport or competition, represents Norhthern Ireland (FIFA and Commonwealth Games), Ireland (IRB and Olympics), while being governed by the UK.
     
  18. russ13

    russ13 First Grade

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    BB et all-back to Moldova.

    In the Hadfield's book, there is a photo of their front row as they are about to pack down for a scrum. I would have though they may have been of Asian appearance-something like Ghangis Khan, but these blokes were white caucasions. They could be mistaken for any of the European/Russian races. They were also big boys.

    I have just got this feeling that these Russian & former colonies of Russia may be our best (or even our last) hope to spread the code. They seem to have the build & athleticism & live in regions where the game can be played in a comfortabble climate (in summer anyway). I hope I am wrong.
     
  19. yankeeboy

    yankeeboy Juniors

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    Moldovans are very similar to Romanians. Romanians are a Romance-language speaking culture, who (I'm assuming) came from the ancient Romans. Thus, both would be Caucasian.

    Also, I think "Red Arrows" are Strela Kazan, who are refered to on many sites as the "Kazan Arrows," just as Dynamo are refered to as "Moscow Magicians." Does anyone know if Strela means Arrows in Tatar or Russian?
     
  20. hgfds

    hgfds Juniors

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    Apparently the moldovian soccer team has to play their internationals in tiraspol as this is the only stadium up to scratch so why should we worry about playing there.If league can build a 2nd conference involving tiraspol,rostov and southern ukraine the benefits would outweigh the negatives.
     

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