The Leeds Rugby Foundation supported a Rugby League match with a difference with almost £6,000 generated to assist with the challenging and ongoing work in Pakistan’s flood ravaged regions.
The Political Animals XIII, founded in recent times by present skipper and Vice President of the Leeds Rugby Foundation, Greg Mulholland MP and made up of MPs and other politicos, took on a BARA (British Asian Rugby Association) Select XIII in a combative and engaging contest played under Rugby League’s Masters Rules. The final result was never going to be that important but for the record the BARA players won by 4 tries to 3 in what were testing conditions.
The money raised by the game, a curtain-raiser to Keighley Cougars’ impressive and thrilling last gasp 35-30 win over Swinton Lions, will go towards the Pakistan Recovery Fund, whose Patron is HRH Prince of Wales. Every penny will be diverted to rebuilding homes and communities in the now, little publicised, vast flooded disaster zone.
Greg Mulholland MP, who scored his side’s two tries, commented: “Political Animals RLFC are delighted to have been able to assist with the fundraising efforts for such a vital and worthy cause and we applaud the efforts being made by BARA and other organisations such as the Leeds Rugby Foundation to assist with the rebuilding of homes and infrastructure in Pakistan.
“Rugby League is a sport that is helping to build tangible bridges between communities and games such as this demonstrate the camaraderie and political goodwill that exists in the sport,” added Greg.
Gavin Peake-Jones, Managing Partner of Knighton White, a philanthropy advisory company who are working in partnership with the British Asian Trust to set up the Pakistan Recovery Fund: “Since the terrible flooding that afflicted much of central Pakistan last year the plight of the people has slipped from the news agenda but the challenges they face are still very severe.
“We are aiming to raise £2 million for the British Asian Trust and fundraising ventures such as this go a long way to helping us achieve our goal,” added Gavin who played for the BARA side.
Executive Chair of the Leeds Rugby Foundation, Paul Rowson added “This was a great occasion and we at the Leeds Rugby Foundation are delighted to be able to support such a worthy cause. It was a tough and uncompromising battle at times but it was always played out in good spirit! The reasoning behind the game has far more significance than the end result and we’ve raised a handsome sum of money to assist with Pakistan’s reconstruction activity over what is a truly massive area of land,”