Netherlands national rugby league team

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Governing body Netherlandse Rugby League Bond
Region Europe
Head coach Netherlands Kane Krlic
Home stadium Rotterdamse RC Beekweg
RLIF ranking 30th
First international
 Scotland A 22–18 Netherlands 
(Sassenheim, Netherlands; 2003)
Biggest win
 Serbia 10–24 Netherlands 
(Belgrade, Serbia; 2005)
Biggest defeat
 Netherlands 16–70 Germany 
(Delft, Netherlands; 2014)
World Cup
Appearances 0

The Netherlands national rugby league team is the national rugby league team of The Netherlands in a sport that is virtually unknown in the Nederlands. It was formed in January 2003. The national team played its first international match in 2003 against Scotland A, where they lost 22–18.

For more Dutch stats, news, team results and more visit the Netherlands RLEF Page.


Rugby league foundation year was in 2003 where it has regularly being played since 2003 under the NNRLB and has seen small domestic growth along the way. The first rugby league club match was played between Te Werve Bustards (Den Haag) and touring Essex Eels. After rugby league ceased in 2008 a new board the Nederlandse Rugby League Bond (NRLB) was entrusted to administer and grow the game in the Netherlands in 2009.

The Dutch participated in 1989 Student Rugby League World Cup in England, against Australia, England, France, New Zealand, Wales, Ireland and Scotland. The first rugby league match in Netherlands was a preparation match for the tournament against the French Army side at the Royal Military Academy in Breda. While in the late 1980s they faced Toulouse to earn a 20 all draw. Having played their first international against Scotland A in Sassenheim only narrowly losing 18 to 22, introducing the Rotterdam Cup in 2004 with a 24–14 loss to Scotland Students and debut 24 to 14 win against Serbia.

2005 saw the Netherlands build on the previous season with the national team playing four internationals. The Netherlands were defeated by Georgia 34 – 14 in April. They then went on to win their other three internationals against Serbia, Scotland and Germany

Serbia made the task of getting past the first round of European qualifiers all the more harder. The Netherlands suffered heavy defeats to Russia 40 – 14 and Georgia 57 – 16. As a consolation the Netherlands managed to defeat the other European newcomers Serbia 38 – 26. Netherlands finished 3rd in the Pool and failed to qualify for the 2008 Rugby League World Cup. The Netherlands capped off 2006 with a win against the Czech Republic 34 -28.

Rotterdam hosted the Nederlandse International Rugby League Nines Festival for visiting European teams between 2004 and 2007.

At present the NRLB are a nonprofit sports association for rugby league with their main goal to get the game exposure and attract more people to the sport. The NRLB have a short summer season (4 rounds + Finals) with the Netherlands 3V Sports Grand Prix 9's competition for clubs Capelle Spartans, Delft Rugby League, Nootdorp Musketiers and Te Werve Bustards, while they host teams for 13-aside matches including the annual clash with Oxford University Old Boys (in the Kermis Challenge) and varying teams from the UK. Netherlands as national and developmental squads have participated in away tours in tournaments such as the Heidelberg 9's in Germany and UK based events.

In recent seasons the Dutch have also participated in a Cross Border Challenge with select German clubs, National Selection matches (Select GPN vs Residents) and promotional games (combined squad vs Capelle Spartans). At youth level this year, the Dutch staged a BARLA U17 tour against a Netherlands Tasman U17 select in July at Nootdorp and Delft.

Like most developing rugby league nations there are restrictions that the Dutch board face within early stages of development like funding, sponsorship, support and promotion.

The Dutch ten-year plan is to have a fully self-supportive domestic competition running for at least 6 months of the year and to have multiple self-standing Rugby League clubs all over the country. The national squad back on the international stage competing with the best. The Nederlandse Rugby League Bond gained Observer membership status from the Rugby League European Federation in February 2012.

In May 2013, Netherlands made 28th on the RLIF World Rankings after their match against Germany in a losing effort.


Official Rankings as of November 2016[1]
Rank Change Team Points
1 Increase  Australia
2 Decrease  New Zealand
3 Steady  England
4 Increase  Scotland
5 Decrease  Samoa
6  France
7  Fiji
8  Ireland
9  Wales
10 Steady  United States
11  Serbia
12 Increase  Canada
13  Italy
14 Decrease  Tonga
15  Papua New Guinea
16 Increase  Russia
17 Decrease  Jamaica
18  Belgium
19 Steady  Spain
20  Malta
21  Lebanon
22 Increase  Ukraine
23  Germany
24  Czech Republic
25 Decrease  Cook Islands
26 Steady  Norway
27  Denmark
28  Greece
29  Sweden
30  Netherlands
31  South Africa
32 Increase  Niue
33 Decrease  Philippines
34 Steady  Chile
35  Vanuatu
36  Latvia
37  Solomon Islands
38  Hungary
39  El Salvador
40  Morocco

The Netherlands have played their first match in 2003 against Scotland A, losing 22 to 18. They then competed in the 2004 Rotterdam Cup, losing both their matches.

The Netherlands failed to progress past the preliminary stages of qualifying for the 2008 Rugby League World Cup, after being defeated by Georgia and Russia in 2006. They did however manage a victory against Serbia.

Following these matches, the national team went on hiatus following a dispute between the Netherlands Federation and the RLEF. In 2009, a new board " Nederlandse Rugby League Bond (NRLB) " was appointed to run the Dutch game and re-establish relations with the RLEF. The Netherlands were re-admitted to the RLEF in 2010, and resumed international competition in 2013 with a friendly match against Germany. [2]


Date Match Stadium City Crowd
19 July 2003 Scotland A def. Netherlands 22–18 Sassenheim Park Sassenheim, Netherlands 689
23 April 2004 Netherlands def. Serbia 24–14 Rotterdamse RC Beekweg Rotterdam, Netherlands 67
7 May 2004 Scotland def. Netherlands 24–14 Rotterdamse RC Beekweg Rotterdam, Netherlands 80
29 April 2005 Georgia def. Netherlands 34–14 VV Hoekse Boys Hoek van Holland, Netherlands 57
18 June 2005 Netherlands def. Serbia 24–10 FK Radnički Stadium Belgrade, Serbia 74
29 June 2005 Netherlands def. Scotland 17–10 RC Sparta Capelle aan den IJssel, Netherlands 187
28 April 2006 Russia def. Netherlands 40–14 VV Hoekse Boys Hoek van Holland, Netherlands 250
26 May 2006 Georgia def. Netherlands 57–16 Locomotive Stadium Tblisi, Georgia 10,935
17 June 2006 Netherlands def. Serbia 38–26 Rotterdamse RC Beekweg Rotterdam, Netherlands 250
5 August 2006 Netherlands def. Czech Republic 34–28 Rotterdamse RC Beekweg Rotterdam, Netherlands 198
4 May 2013 Germany def. Netherlands 28–22 Heidelberg RFC Park Heidelberg, Germay 121
26 June 2013 Belgium def. Netherlands 22–6 Delft, Netherlands
3 May 2014 Germany def. Netherlands 70–16 Delft, Netherlands
13 August 2016 Germany def. Netherlands 8-6 Rotterdam, Netherlands 34
3 September 2016 Belgium def. Netherlands 34-12 Brussels, Belgium 47






Coaching Roster[edit]

Coaches Name Role
Netherlands Kane Krlic Head Coach
England Matthew Rigby Assistant Coach
New Zealand Joe Collins Assistant Coach


This is a list of players that have played recently.[2]

Name Position Apps
Alan Barker Prop 1
Joel Barrett Fullback, Wing 2
Benjamin Blom (C) Five-eighth, Halfback 3
Cyril Breinburg Fullback, Wing 2
Reiner Breinburg Lock, Second-row 1
Jason Bruygoms Lock, Second-row 3
Justin De Hey Second-row, Prop 1
Aaron De Jager Centre, Five-eighth, Halfback 4
Raymond Den Englesman Second-row, Lock 4
Kees Foxon Centre, Wing 3
Vincent Grimbergen Second-row, Lock 2
Jamie Groeneweg Wing, Centre 2
Roland Haar Wing, Centre 2
Chris Hodgetts Hooker 3
Alex Hoogezand Lock, Second-row 2
James Howitt Second-row, Prop 1
Remco Vrasdonk Loose forward 3
Martijn Jonkers Second-row, Prop, Lock 1
Jonathan McKenzie Second-row, Prop 1
Jorik Moree Five-eighth, Halfback 2
Dayne Neirinckx Centre, Wing 1
Soerd Niebor Second-row, Prop 2
Rick Oakes Centre, Second-row 1
Phil Parkinson Prop 3
Johnny Qua Prop, Second-row 3
Dirk Schutt Hooker 1
Alex Smits Prop, Second-row 1
Rudy Stanford-Smyth Fullback, Halfback 2
Duncan Taylor Centre, Lock 3
Rhodri Thomas Loose forward 1
Nicholas Jones Second-row 1
Ronald van der Broek Centre, Second-row 4
Bernard van Holstein Prop, Second-row 3
Bevan Williams Second-row, Prop 1
Bevan Williamson Lock, Prop, Second-row 3
Andrew (Hippo) Newton Lock, Prop, Second-row 3

Notable players that have played for the Netherlands[edit]

Notable players of Dutch Heritage[edit]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]