South Australian Rugby League
|South Australian Rugby League|
|Headquarters||Hindmarsh Stadium, Holden Street, Hindmarsh, South Australia|
|Key people||Paul Watt (Chair)|
As of 2 December 2009
The South Australian Rugby League (SARL) is a not-for-profit organisation responsible for administering the game of rugby league in the state of South Australia. It was formed 28 July 1976 and is an affiliated state of the Australian Rugby League.
In the 1940s the Port Adelaide rugby union club split itself into four rugby league clubs, which formed the basis of the first organised rugby league competition in the state, run under the banner of the Amateur South Australian Rugby League. The first South Australian representative team was formed in the early 1950s and traveled to play the South Sydney Rabbitohs in Sydney, NSW where they lost 45–10.
The first iteration of the South Australian Rugby League was created in the 1950s when Australian soldiers formed a small four team competition based out of the Woomera Test Range. This body ceased to exist when the soldiers were transferred to the Northern Territory.
The current SARL was incorporated on 28 July 1976 and originally featured teams from Northern Districts, South Adelaide, Port Adelaide, Glenelg, Norwood and West Lakes.
Today the competition features eight senior clubs and seven junior clubs, competitions are run from Under 7's through to First Grade.
|Branding of the South Australian Rugby League|
Representative teams are selected each year to compete in the Australian Secondary Schools Rugby League (ASSRL) National Championships at both 15 and 18 years of age respectively, competing against Western Australia, Victoria, Northern Territory and New South Wales Combined Independent Schools (NSW CIS) at both age levels. Players who compete representing South Australia each year are eligible to be selected into both the Australian Merit Squad and the Australian Affiliated States Merit Squad at the 15 Years championships, and the Australian Schoolboys as well as the Australian Affiliated States team at the 18 Years championships.
The Adelaide Premiership
The top level competition in the SARL is sponsored as the Sportcentre Cup and is divided into two divisions. Division one features five clubs (ranked 1st-5th after Round 10) and division two features five clubs (ranked 6th-10th after Round 10).
Division One clubs
- Central Districts Roosters 1
- Henley Raiders
- Northern Districts Dragons (no longer)
- South Adelaide Bulldogs
- Central Districts Roosters 2
Division Two clubs
- Mitchell Park Tigers
- Port Adelaide Cougars Cougars
- River City Knights
- TEC Titans
- The 2005 Grand Final was contested between Eels and Central Districts at Hanson Reserve, Adelaide on 21 August 2005. The Eels won 22–18.
- In 2006 the SARL celebrated its 30th anniversary with the Tigers Rugby League Club securing both the Reserve and First Grade premierships, as well as coming runners-up in the Under 18 competition, losing to the Aberfoyle Dragons Under 18 outfit.
- In 2009 the Aberfoyle Dragons beat the Tigers Rugby League club in a dirty match, winning 34-6 with a man down due to a fight near half time. This was also the first time a team had won the premiership two times in a row.
- In 2009 the competition saw the return of reserve grade in a modified version called "Senior 11's" this was great for all clubs who enjoyed 11 aside, 5 metre line and scorer defends at the restart. It brought many ex players back to clubs and has promoted many debutants an avenue to play the game. The Roosters adapted to the modified rules and pace of the game and went undefeated in the 2009 season to see the Cougars in the grand final under lights at Hindmarsh. Although it started out a grind, the Roosters took control leaving the Cougars behind 54-20 in a grand final thumping of great proportions. In the A-grade grandfinal the Eels beat South Adelaide in a close match with the final try being scored in the last forty seconds of the match.
- During the 2010 season the Tier A High Schools competition is held with U-15's & U-18's playing in round robin matches stretching approximately 12 weeks. Gawler High School took the U-18's grand final against the champions for the last 7 years in Aberfoyle Park. Emerging talent from the Gawler region is proving to be a great feeder to the local club the Roosters. In the Senior 11's the Eels went undefeated all year to take out the premiership and the A-grade Eels went on to be both Minor and overall Premiers.
- The 2012 Sports Centre Cup Division 1 Grand Final was won by Central Districts Roosters in an epic battle against Northern Districts Dragons at Hindmarsh Stadium. In the same year, Cougars won the Sports Centre Cup Division 2 Grand Final against Eels.
- The 2013 Sports Centre Division 1 Grand Final was again won by Central Districts Roosters in a replay of the 2012 grand final with Northern District Dragons at Victoria Park.
Notable SARL juniors competed in the NRL
The following South Australian junior players have played in the National Rugby League.
Northern Districts Dragons
- Nathan Vagg (2 games) - Cronulla Sharks (2003)
South Adelaide Bulldogs
- Joel Reddy (137 games) - Parramatta Eels (2005-2011), Wests Tigers (2012-2013), South Sydney Rabbitohs (2014-2016)
Central Districts Roosters
- Brenton Lawrence (86 games*) - Gold Coast Titans (2011-2012), Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles (2013-present)
* Current player as of 2017 NRL season
- "Contact Us". South Australian Rugby League. Retrieved 2 December 2009.
- "Staff". South Australian Rugby League. Retrieved 2 December 2009.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 9 April 2013. Retrieved 2014-05-12.
- "Joel Reddy". South Sydney Rabbitohs. 15 April 2015. Archived from the original on 11 April 2015. Retrieved 15 April 2015.
- Greenwood, Rob (10 February 2015). "Manly Sea Eagles prop Brenton Lawrence returns to Adelaide's Northern Suburbs". Messenger. Retrieved 15 May 2015.