The matches are being organised by Cook Islands Rugby League Referees Association.
Official Taua Benioni says these trial matches are a great build-up leading up to the Nines tournament.
“Last Wednesday Cook Islands Rugby League Rugby Association officiated its first rugby league trial match between Mitiaro (Mighty Arrows) and the Mangaia Boars,” Benioni said.
“When trialling out against another team with a full squad of referee officials, who are on trial themselves, it gives that seriousness about what the tournament and game is all about.”
The match between Mitiaro and Mangaia was played in good spirit, Benioni said.
“With a 4 x 9-minute quarters, all players, team management and officials were cautioned before the game by myself especially around safety in the ruck area.”
Tonight’s trial match at Avatiu Sports ground will feature Mauke playing against Pukapuka and Penrhyn taking on either Rarotonga or Aitutaki. The match will kick off at 5pm.
Benioni said: “Safety is a priority whether it be a trial match or not. Having been to a Pa Enua rugby league team training, it’s so noticeable of players having little or no knowledge of the game but eager to have their name registered for the tournament, thus the reason for a full trial match official.”
“I fully recommend that all teams take part in trial matches especially with the tournament going on for three days solid. Contact Tai Nelio to arrange trial games.”