Immortals RLFC

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IMMORTALS R.L.F.C.
Club information
Full name LAU IMMORTALS Rugby League Football Club
Nickname(s) Immortals
Founded 2002
Current details
Ground(s)
  • Bhamdoun Municipal Stadium (5,000)
CEO(s) Lebanon Sami Garabedian
Coach(s) Australia / Lebanon Raymond Safi
Captain(s) Lebanon Robin Hachach
Competition Lebanon Rugby League Championship
2010-2011 Championsnd
Records
Most capped 65 - Lebanon Nayef Abi Said
Most points 454 - Lebanon Rudy Hachache

The Lebanese American University Immortals RLFC is a rugby league team that has been participating in Lebanese Rugby League Committee competitions since its first domestic championship in 2002. The Immortals are considered as ”the undisputed kings of Lebanese rugby league” having won five titles from 11 possible one.

History[edit]

The Immortals Squad that defeated the AUB Wolves RLFC in the spring 2004 Championship Final 34 – 22 to clinch their second spring title in a row. From left to right:
First Row: Freddy, Marwan, Salim, Charbel
Second Row: Omar, Majed, Hazem, Nayef, Karim, Sam, Nouri, Abbas
Third Row: Ibrahim, Ahmad, Roy, Jawad, Raja, Rudy (Missing)

In 2001, RLIF sanctions the development plan for Lebanese rugby league. The RLIF send Mr. Danni Kazandjian as a development officer to Lebanon. After successive meeting with Lebanese American University Dean of Student’s Affairs and sports Coordinator the team got its funding and was established. The team started training for their first season with none other than Danni Kazandijian as their coach. The team was composed mainly of LAU students and some other university students.
The first two seasons for the Immortals were a true underdog story. In winter 2002, the Immortals lost their first three games in a row, than won their first game in Jamhour Stadium defeating the Lebanese Army rugby league team. The Immortals battled their way up where they tied points with UOB Razorbacks RLFC in the league standing, but they were able to gain a spot in the season Final due to goal difference. The Immortals lost the Winter 2002 Final to AUB Wolves RLFC.

The spring 2003 championship started in better way than the previous season. The Immortals finished the season on top of the table standing with 14 points, winning seven games and losing two. The spring 2003 Final was a grudge game against their bitter rivals the Wolves where the Immortals won their first title by unexpectedly defeating the wolves 32-17 in a close game.

The team's most experienced player, Sami Halabi, who played Rugby Union for 10 years in Dubai before playing Rugby league, was asked to coach the team as a coach player in the 2003. The team had a good Season in which his second place in the league standing earned him a place in Season Final where he lost the final Game to the Wolves RLFC 12-18.
In the spring 2004 as in the previous spring championship, finished the season on top of the table. In the season final game, the Immortals RLFC defeated the wolves RLFC 34-22 to win their second spring championship in a row.

The winter 2004 championship turned to be a disaster for the Immortals: their third place in the standing denied them a place in the final game in which the Razorbacks RLFC where crowned for the first time as champions.

After the previous year upset, the Immortals RLFC played a great 2005 spring championship in which they won the Season final by in AUB.

The winter 2005 championship, the Immortals finished the season in second place just behind a Razorback RLFC team whose defensive line just conceived 38 points in 8 games. The final game held in Balamand Stadium, was as promised defensive game. The Immortals RLFC won the final game 10 – 8. (All four tries were scored in the first 20 minutes in the game). The Immortals became the first team in Lebanese Rugby League Championship to win both spring and winter championships.

As it became the unofficial tradition the Immortals RLFC couldn’t win both championship in a row finished their 2006 spring championship in second behind the Razorbacks. The Razorbacks won a well deserved final game in Balamand Stadium 36-14 to clinch their second Title. During the 2006 spring championship, the Immortals RLFC travelled to France to play in a seven’s tournament as part of the "Tournoi des 5 Ballons "organized by the ESEC University. The Immortals tied point with a Russian and French university but failed to play the final game by a mere try in tries difference. The Immortals took third place after beating a Spanish university in their last game. The Sami Halabi era came to an end due to the fact that Mr. Halabi was forced to travel, the Immortals RLFC appointed Both Ibrahim Ballout and the Lebanese Rugby League undoubtedly best player Rudy Hachach as team coaches. The Immortals had a perfect Season. They finished their season undefeated and won their final game against their bitter Rivals the Wolves RLFC in Bhamdoun 36 -10. During this season, the Immortals set the Lebanese Rugby League championship winning margin record 82-0 against Club Libanais (now known as Jounieh Al Galacticos RLFC) on January 14, 2007 in Bhamdoun Stadium.
The spring 2007 had its ups and downs, but right after the Immortals RLFC returned on the right track the unfortunate “Nahr el Bared” Incidents forced an early end to the championship. The Lebanese Rugby League Committee declared the Galacticos RLFC as champions.
With the beginning of the 2008 the winter and spring championship were joined into a one 2007/2008 Bank of Beirut championship. The Immortals finished the Season top seeded but lost in the finals To the Jounieh Galacticos.

The second version of the 2008/2009 Bank of Beirut Championship also finished the Season with a first undefeated Season but also lost to Galacticos in the final in an epic game after they conceded four tries in the first but came back in the second half. The Immortals were leading until they lost in the last minute with a correct try disallowed and a controversial penalty.

The Immortals started their campaign for the Bank of Beirut championship by winning the First Wolves 9’s tournament; then as the previous season they finished the regular undefeated and they had to wait to play their arch rivals in the final. The LAU immortals went to the lockers for the first time in their season trailing by one point but as predicted came back the second half and managed to win the game and clinch the title. One week Later the Immortals completed the Lebanese Rugby League Treble by winning the AUB 9’s 2010 Tournament.

The 2010/2011 went as smooth as the previous year, the immortals clinched their seventh title by finishing again undefeated on top of the league table and beating AUB red backs in a close final game 16-8. During their campaign the Immortals travelled to Czech Republic where they won also the RL 9’s tournament – Pardubice without losing any game and their half back Walid Yassine chosen as Tournament MVP.

Historical Standing

Historical Standing
Year Championship Regular season result Final game result
2002 Winter Second Second
2003 Spring First CHAMPIONS
2003 Winter Second Second
2004 Spring First CHAMPIONS
2004 Winter Third ----
2005 Spring Second CHAMPIONS
2005 Winter Second CHAMPIONS
2006 Spring Second Second
2006 Winter First CHAMPIONS
2007 Spring Second ----
2008-09 First Second
2009-10 First CHAMPIONS
2010-11 First CHAMPIONS

Colours[edit]

IMMORTALS RLFC
Team kit
IMMORTALS RLFC Reserves
Team kit

The Immortals first played with the French Tricolor jerseys (Blue, White and red) due to the lack of suitable rugby league clothing in Lebanon. The jerseys were donated by the French Rugby League Federation post the 2002 Mediterranean Cup. All these jerseys carried the number 13.
But due to its affiliation with the Lebanese American University, the Immortals adopted green and white as their official club colors in the following years.

[edit]

The logo represent the face of a fictional figure of an Immortal . The drawing was done by Raymond Finan. The date refers to the year the team was established in 2002. The number “XIII” refers to rugby league. The colors green and white are associated with the colors of the Lebanese American University. The oval shape of the logo refers to the shape of the Rugby League ball.

The final layout of the logo was finalized and approved in the end of the year 2008.

Honours[edit]

George Rehayem in the Final Winter Championship 2005 against UOB Razorbacks RLFC
  • Local Cups:

Lebanese Rugby League Spring Champions: 2003 - 2004 - 2005
Lebanese Rugby League Winter Champions: 2005 - 2006
Bank of Beirut Champions: 2009/2010 - 2010/2011
Wolves 9's Tournament: 2009
AUB 9's Tournament: 2010

  • International Cups:

Tournoi des 5 Ballons 2006 - Paris: 3rd Place
RL 9’s tournament - Pardubice, Czech Republic: Champions

  • Awards:

LAU Best Achievement Award: 2003 - 2004 - 2009 - 2010 - 2011

2008 / 2009 Squad[edit]

For more details on this topic, see Immortals RLFC.
  • Squad As November 2008
No Nat Player Position Height (m) Weight (Kg) Age Previous Club Years
1 England Allen Khoury* Full Back 1.72 64 20 Immortals RLFC 3
2 Lebanon Bahig Saridar Right Wing 1.80 92 19 Immortals RLFC 2
3 Lebanon Mohamad Jamil Right Center 1.79 84 22 Immortals RLFC 4
4 Lebanon George Rahal Left Center 1.78 89 22 Black Lions RUFC 4
5 Brazil Joe Serge Safa* Left Wing 1.80 83 22 -- Rookie
6 England Karim Jammal* Stand Off 1.73 83 20 Phoenicians RUFC 2
7 France Jad El-Hashem* Scrum Half 1.75 86 20 Immortals RLFC 2
8 Lebanon Abed Hammoud Prop 1.86 111 22 Immortals RLFC 3
9 Lebanon Hani Rifai Hooker 1.74 98 21 Immortals RLFC 2
10 Lebanon Nayef Abi Said Prop 1.85 118 28 Immortals RLFC 7
11 Lebanon Rudy Hachach Second Row 1.85 117 29 Immortals RLFC 7
12 State of Palestine Ahmad Masri Second Row 1.81 88 25 Galacticos RLFC 4
13 Lebanon Robin Hachach (C) Loose Forward 1.85 102 26 Immortals RLFC 3
14 Lebanon Freddy Beaini Loose Forward 1.77 74 24 Immortals RLFC 5
15 Lebanon Darwish Nahouzi Second Row 1.64 70 24 Immortals RLFC 2
16 Canada Ramez Ghandour* Prop 1.76 95 21 -- Rookie
17 Lebanon Hassan Shaheen Wing 1.80 75 20 Immortals RLFC 2
18 Lebanon Ahmad Fadlalah Second Row 1.80 87 19 Immortals RLFC 2
19 Lebanon Shawkat El Ghazi Prop 1.76 95 21 -- Rookie
20 Lebanon Kassem Abdo Wing 1.75 82 20 -- Rookie
21 Lebanon Alaa Khashab Wing 1.80 65 22 -- Rookie
22 State of Palestine Hani Assi Prop 1.82 94 25 -- Rookie
23 State of Palestine Khalil Namro Second Row 1.88 94 20 -- Rookie
24 Lebanon Abed Hammoud Center 1.78 83 19 -- Rookie
25 Lebanon Yves Khoury Center 1.85 80 22 Immortals RLFC 2
26 France Kevin Haddad* Wing 1.75 83 21 Immortals RLFC 2
27 Australia Walid Yassine Center 1.87 75 18 -- Rookie
28 Lebanon Rami Hawi Second Row 1.84 85 26 -- Rookie
  • Staff As November 2008
Nat Name Position Age Previous Club Years
LebanonAustralia Raymond Safi Head Coach 34 Wolves RLFC 2
Lebanon Rudy Hachach Assistant Coach 29 Immortals RLFC 3
Lebanon Nayef Abi Said Assistant Coach 28 Immortals RLFC 2
State of Palestine Hani Assi Physical Trainer 25 Cedars (Lebanese Rugby League National Team) 1
Lebanon Maher Fadlalah Physio 38 Lebanese American University 3

Rivalries[edit]

The Immortals and their fans have developed rivalries with other clubs, particularly the AUB Wolves RLFC, since the beginning of the local competitions in 2002, when the two sides were the strongest in the competition. The Immortals won five championships and the Wolves only won two championships during the period of winter and spring championships, and faced one another in six Grand Finals.

Records[edit]

Player records[edit]

LRLC STATS 2002 - 2007 (10 Seasons)

  • Top 10 scorers (regular season only)
    • 1. Rudy Hachache (LAU) 454 (111 tries, 5 goals)
    • 2. Sami Halabi (LAU) 328 (45 tries, 74 goals)
    • 4. Jawad Fakih (LAU) 230 (48 tries, 19 goals)
    • 8. Ibrahim Ballout (LAU) 138 (11 tries, 47 goals)
  • Top 10 try scorers (regular season only)
    • 1. Rudy Hachache (LAU) 111
    • 2. Jawad Fakih (LAU) 48
    • 3. 45
  • Top 10 goal scorers (regular season only – minimum 50 points)
    • 1. Sami Halabi (LAU) 148 (64%)
    • 3. Ibrahim Ballout (LAU) 94 (62%)
    • 5. Hamid Wazni (LAU) 78 (72%) (Played Only Two Consecutive Seasons)
  • John Elias Award (The Lebanese Rugby League MVP Award):
    • Jawad Fakih : Winter 2005
    • Robin Hachach: 2008
    • Rudy Hachach : Spring 2004 - Winter 2006
    • Sami Halabi : Spring 2003 - Spring 2005

Team records[edit]

The team players illustrating the Lebanese Rugby League Championship Winning Margin Record 82-0 against Club Libanais (now known as Jounieh Al Galacticos RLFC) on January 14th, 2007 in Bhamdoun Stadium.
  • First team to win the Spring Championship
  • First team to win both the Spring Championship and the Winter Championship
  • Hold Both the Highest Scoring points in The Lebanese Championship
    • LAU vs. CL 82-0 2006 Winter Championship
    • LAU vs. NDU 76-0 2004 Spring Championship
  • Finished The 2006 Winter Championship UNDEFEATED
  • Most consecutive wins in a regular season:
    • 8 Games: Winter 2006 (The Game against NDU was cancelled)
    • 10 Games: 2008/2009 Season
  • The Most Crowned Team in the Lebanese Rugby League Championships
    • LAU Immortals RLFC : 5 Championships
    • AUB Wolves RLFC: 2 Championships
    • UOB Razorbacks RLFC: 2 Championships
    • Jounieh Al Galacticos RLFC : 2 Championships
  • Holds the record for the Most Finals Played: 9 Finals

Notable former players[edit]

  • LebanonCanada Karim "Stoly" Abdo (Prop)
  • State of Palestine Hazem el Ali (Prop)
  • Jordan Omar Azar (Hooker)
  • Lebanon Maher Darwich (Wing)
  • Lebanon Bahig Demashkiye (Scrum Half)
  • Lebanon Jawad Fakih (Full Back)
  • Lebanon Salim Frem (Center)
  • LebanonUnited States Sami Halabi (Hooker / Utility player)
  • Lebanon Marwan Itany (Stand off)
  • Jordan Raja Khoury (Scrum Half)
  • Australia Alex Marlow (Stand Off)
  • Lebanon Charbel Raad (Second Row)
  • Lebanon Hamid Wazni (Full Back)
  • Jordan Hadi Yashrouti (Half Back)
  • Lebanon Abass Haidar (Prop)
  • Lebanon Freddy Baeini (Center)
  • Lebanon Hussein "Abo Ali" Sharafeddine (Prop/Second Row)
  • LebanonBrazil Ali Sadek (Wing)

External links[edit]