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UCLan welcomes Fiji in Rugby League World Cup campaign

14 November 2013

Lyndsey Boardman

Squad heads to Preston to prepare for quarter finals

As the Rugby League World Cup 2013 (RLWC2013) enters the quarter final stages the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) has welcomed the Fijian Rugby League team following the Irish squad’s exit from the tournament.

UCLan Sports Arena has now been selected as a base camp for the Fijian team who will face Samoa in the quarter final on Sunday 17 November at the Halliwell Jones Stadium in Warrington. The University has already acted as the official training venue for the Irish squad during the competition and following their departure in the group stages, it will now host the Fijian team.

Fiji, who beat Ireland 32-14 in the group stages to qualify for the next round, will use the Arena’s rugby pitches and strength and conditioning suite as part of their rigorous training schedule.

“Access to physiotherapy and sports massage treatments is vital for the players’ well-being and it’s great that in return we’re able to provide practical experience for the students carrying out the massage sessions.”

The players will also take advantage of the University’s new Physiotherapy Clinic for treatment and receive sports massage from UCLan’s second and third year sports therapy students.

Mick Reid, Strength and Conditioning Coach for Fiji, commented: “We’ve had a warm welcome from the staff and students at UCLan and it’s great that everything we need is practically in one place.

“Access to physiotherapy and sports massage treatments is vital for the players’ well-being and it’s great that in return we’re able to provide practical experience for the students carrying out the massage sessions.”

“We are happy to welcome the Fijian team to UCLan Sports Arena to use our first-class facilities as part of their training process.”

UCLan is the only university and the sole venue in Lancashire to be chosen as a host venue for the 14 nation tournament. UCLan, in partnership with Preston City Council and the Marriott Hotel, beat off tough competition from other venues in the selection process.

The Academic Director of Sport at UCLan, Dr Adrian Ibbetson, said: “We are happy to welcome the Fijian team to UCLan Sports Arena to use our first-class facilities as part of their training process, particularly as this builds on our friendship having hosted athletes from the country for their Olympic preparations.

“UCLan helped to bring the spirit of the Rugby League World Cup 2013 to the local community during Ireland’s stay by working with the team to hold a coaching master class, school tag tournament and open training sessions. The Irish team did a great job of boosting rugby league interest in Lancashire and we aim to continue this by supporting Fiji in their World Cup campaign.”