For the first time ever, Women’s and Physical Disability teams participated in the Commonwealth Under 23 Nine’s Championships held at Dolphin Stadium in Redcliffe, Queensland.
Over two days, the full event proved to be world class and highly competitive with Australia narrowly holding off Tonga to take gold in the Men’s final 14 – 8, and Samoa in the Women’s final, also 14 – 8. The home nation completed a clean sweep also triumphing in Physical Disabilities Tournament.
The event was supported by enthusiastic crowds showcasing the 9s version of the sport and attracted teams from all corners of the Commonwealth. Tonga and Samoa built on their recent performances in the World Cup to take silver in the Men’s and Women’s events while New Zealand took silver in the Physical Disabilities tournament.
Newly elected RLIF Chairman John Grant commented: “RLIF has been working closely with the Commonwealth Games Organisers to build on the great success of Rugby League's participation in the 2014 Championships held in Glasgow. The quality of play demonstrated by the Physical Disabilities teams was truly inspirational and the Men’s and Women’s events proved that 9s has a great future within our sport. RLIF thanks all the sponsors and supporters and in particular the Dolphins, Moreton Bay Regional Council and the state of Queensland for raising the standard of these Championships. RLIF congratulates Australia on their achievement of the grand slam in the 2018 Championships and we look forward to hosting our next Championships in Birmingham UK in 2022”.