Horta and Asia Rugby discuss establishment of Rugby Union in TL

Horta and Asia Rugby discuss establishment of Rugby Union in TL

Image Tatoli/Egas Cristóvão

DILI, 23 may 2024 (TATOLI) – In a significant move, the President of the Republic, Jose Ramos Horta, on wednesday, met with representatives from Asia Rugby at the Presidential Palace to discuss bringing rugby union to Timor-Leste.

After this meeting, Rodney Holt said: “We are bringing Rugby Union to Timor-Leste. Rugby is a sport played in 130 nations around the world.”

Holt inroduced Qais Abdulah Al Dhalai, the Head of Rugby for Asia who leads rugby in 45 Asian nations.

Qais declared that they signed a Memorandum of Understanding, calling this a “historic moment” as the “first stepping stone” to establishing rugby in Timor-Leste.

Qais expressed his optimism about rugby’s potential, similar to its development in Indonesia: “We hope that Timor-Leste will become our 37th member union,” he said. “Rugby, as an Olympic sport, has very good potential to have a presence here with boys and girls participating.”

Qais thanked President Horta for supporting the MOU signing on tuesday, saying “Together, we can do even better. The President is very supportive because rugby involves youth.”

The team is scheduled to meet with the sports minister to agree on the steps for developing the sport and its infrastructure in Timor-Leste.

This meeting marks the first step towards developing rugby as an Olympic sport and its infrastructure in Timor-Leste, as a nation that could potentially become a new member of the Asia Rugby Federation.


Journalist: Jose Belarmino de Sa

Editor: Filomeno Martins 


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