Greece’s women’s Rugby League team has made history, chalking up their first ever win by beating Turkey 8-4 in a tightly fought Euro Group B (South) encounter at Istanbul University Stadium.
Made up entirely of local players, the Greeks showed composure to come away with a two-tries to one win, thanks in large part to some incredible defence, coupled with a strong platform being laid by the Greek forwards.
With just a few minutes remaining in the match and the scores locked at four apiece, Greece’s forwards marched the ball upfield and eventually found themselves just metres from the Turkish line. With Turkey on the back-pedal, Greece swung the ball out wide for only the first time in the second half, and were immediately rewarded with a tie-breaking try – planting the ball over the line to ultimately take the lead and the win.
The result is major milestone for women’s Rugby League in Greece, with the last encounter between the two sides in 2019 resulting in a 40-4 drubbing in Edirne. Just eight Greek women from that match returned to Turkey for the latest encounter in the surest sign yet that the women’s game in Greece is improving.
More Greek Rugby League history will be made in the coming weeks when Greece’s men’s side run out at their first ever Rugby League World Cup, where they will meet France at Doncaster’s Eco Power Stadium on 17 October (AEDT). The side will then face their toughest challenges yet when they face off with Rugby League powerhouses Samoa, and host nation England in their remaining pool matches.