Rugby League World Cup

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Wales

Currently ranked #14

Wales in the earlier years

Internationally, Wales were the first side to ever host an international match under Northern Union rules when, on New Year’s Day 1908, Wales beat New Zealand 9-8 in Aberdare in the heart of the Welsh valleys on a ground which later became a training pitch to many of the current Welsh international rugby league sides at different age groups.

Both Wales and New Zealand had a lot in common 100 years ago. The game of rugby was the national sport in both countries, and both had caused controversy by inviting players to legitimately turn professional and play this new version of the game.

It wasn’t until 2005 that Welsh Rugby League finally obtained independence from its English counterpart and were given full membership of the RLIF in 2010, but Welsh Rugby League has been around since 1907. Wales’ first game came in 1908 in Aberdare, Wales – a 9-8 victory over New Zealand.

Wales’ first taste of silverware was the 2010 European Cup which, in turn, ensured their qualification for the 2011 Four Nations where they failed to win a game against Australia, England, and New Zealand.

In terms of World Cup appearances, Wales has competed in five: 1975, 1995, 2000, 2008 and 2013 with two semi-final appearances in 1995 and 2000. This number of appearances will be five by 2021 as Wales qualified with ease, finishing second in the 2018 European Championship.

Wales has also won the European Championship seven times.

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