"Don't wrap us in cotton wool" say physical disability rugby league players

31st May 2019, 13:38

The rough and tumble world of rugby league has been off-limits to those with a disability. That perception is being challenged in both hemispheres of the rugby league world as the players are saying loud and clear “Don’t wrap us in cotton wool”


Physical Disability Rugby League is being played and experiencing rapid growth as more people realise that they can play the game that they love. The stories that emerge are inspirational as, in this game, every player who gets on to the field is already used to facing challenges.


The game is a mixture of full-on contact rugby league with an option for a touch version for those that prefer. It has a strong and growing in Australia, New Zealand and in the UK.


In Australia, the game has generated interest wider than just the current fans and clubs. Broadcaster, ABC have produced a documentary which highlights the way in which PDRL is changing the lives of players, coaches and volunteers.


The programme which tells the stories of the players, their enjoyment and confidence gained from playing their chosen sport, focusses on the stories of the players who play for the NRL’s Gold Coast Titans PDRL team and the impact that rugby league has had on their lives.


You can watch the full episode by clicking here


The charge in the UK is being spearheaded by Adam Hills, the Australian comedian.


Being a rugby league player is a huge part of Adam’s life. He fits in playing and training with Super League club, Warrington Wolves whilst presenting his award-winning show on UK Channel 4, The Last Leg.


“We were all champing at the prosthetic bit for the new PDRL season to start," said Hills. "It’s hard to believe that the first ever PDRL game was just over a year ago - and since then we’ve seen a viable competition form. With our Wolves team beating the South Sydney Rabbitohs PDRL team in the Club Challenge in Sydney as well, PDRL is going from strength to strength. 


" I want as many people as possible to experience PDRL in 2019. Everyone is welcome to come to our festivals, soak up the atmosphere, and become addicted to watching PDRL. Even if you’ve never watched Rugby League before, I guarantee you’ll love it.”