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Carlson re-elected League president

Saturday 28 January 2023 | Written by CI News Staff | Published in Rugby league, Sports


Carlson re-elected League president
From left, Former 4XC executive director Siva Gounder, Cook Islands Rugby League president Charles Carlson and Peggy Matapo. PHOTO: RASHNEEL KUMAR/22020446

Charles Carlson was re-elected unopposed as the Cook Islands Rugby League Association (CIRLA) president at its annual general meeting on Wednesday.

Carlson, who has been in the role since 2004, will serve for three years.

There were no other nominations received from those present at the meeting held at the CISNOC Federation Room.

Association vice-president Rae Tupa and secretary and competition coordinator Franky Toa were also re-elected. Toa will be supported by newbie Harriet Tuara in competition coordinator’s role. The secretary role is for three years but the competition coordinator is re-elected annually.

The AGM was attended by all active clubs – Avatiu/Nikao Eels, Arorangi Bears, Titikaveka Bulldogs, Ngatangiia/Matavera Sea Eagles, Tupapa Maraerenga Panthers and the Rugby League Referee’s Association. Takuvaine Warriors and Aitutaki Sharks did not attend this year.

Carlson told Cook Islands News: “I have been in this role since 2004 so that is a very long time. I made it clear at the meeting that this will definitely be my last term. I don’t think I can walk away from the game as this has been my life and passion as a player and in management.”

“I would like to play a more support and mentoring role to CIRL and also to other sporting codes that need help.”

Carlson says the challenge now is to put a succession plan in place over the next three years.

To be able to manage this operation as volunteers shows the passion and commitment of those at the helm, he adds.

“We have a very small management team but are wholeheartedly committed to making the game a success and for the benefit of our young people and the Cook Islands.

“We do have a number of roles on the executives that have been sitting idle for a while so we would love to see more people at this level in management and learn from our experienced management team.”

The association has other positions that needs filling – marketing and sponsorship, junior development manager, media and publications, and policies and procedures. All these roles within the rugby league federation are all voluntary.

Carlson said: “It takes a lot of faith and some divine aspirations or intervention at times to be able to do what we have achieved. As the good Lord says commit everything you do to the LORD, trust him, and he will help you!

“No doubt CIRL has made a huge impact on our national sports, including internationally. The fact that a small nation like the Cook Islands could participate in the Rugby League World Cup for both the men and the women speaks volumes of our impact on sports.”

Meanwhile the competition coordinator will be calling another meeting soon with the clubs to discuss the 2023 domestic season earmarked to kick-off on the 10/11th of February.

In the meantime, CIRLA will be running its Junior Development Programme and will be based in Avatiu this weekend from 9am onwards. The programme is for both boys and girls aged 6-12 years old.