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The Sea Eagles young gun leading Malta’s charge to World Cup dream

While the big boys battle it out in the International arena in the coming weeks – there’s also another Rugby League competition being played in our backyard – The Emerging Nations World Championship.

The competition has given tier-two and tier-three nations the opportunity to put their country on the map by winning the tournament – which guarantees automatic qualification for the 2021 World Cup.

Malta and Niue will battle it out in the finale on Saturday afternoon at St Marys Leagues Stadium.

Former Wests Tigers under 20’s and Manly Sea Eagles young gun Tyler Cassel is an important cog in the Maltese line-up and says it would be huge for the Maltese community to play in a World Cup.

“It would mean anything and everything to take out this tournament,” Cassel said.

“Not just myself – but for the whole Maltese community and Maltese Rugby League – who have been trying for many years to make a World Cup.

“We have the opportunity tomorrow to actually qualify for the World Cup for 2021.

“It’s been very good exposure over the last couple of weeks.

“All of the Countries who have come together to play in the Emerging Nations have had a good crack at the title and hopefully we’ll see some of these tier-two and tier-three nations make the World Cup in years to come.”

Cassel is one of several players alongside Eddie Paea and Wes Lolo who have featured in the tournament – while also having a taste of what it’s like to be involved in the NRL ranks.

His Maltese heritage comes from his Grandfather on his Dad’s side. He’s also played one game for Scotland in the 2016 Four Nations.


Listen to the full interview below:

Christian Jantzen