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Croatia rugby claims historic promotion with victory in Israel 

Croatia rugby claims historic promotion with victory in Israel 

Croatia coach Anthony Poša is hoisted in the air after today’s win (Photo credit: Berislav Rožman)

The Croatian national rugby team has claimed an historic promotion after toppling Israel in Yizre’el on Saturday afternoon.  

Today’s impressive 27-19 victory over Israel means Croatia has clinched the five-team Rugby Europe Conference 1 South and earned promotion next season to the European Trophy division. 

This is the highest level Croatia rugby has been at since the Rugby Europe system started and a massive achievement for the small nation.

In the past, Croatia has relied on players from abroad, mainly New Zealand, but coach Anthony Poša and his team have done a superb job this campaign with this team made up of mainly local-based players. 

“To come to Israel with all the pressure on us and get a win like this is exceptional. I’m a very proud coach tonight. We had all sorts of excuses and unavailabilities this season that we could of lost that game and everything would of still been ok, but to go behind and show the heart and commitment needed to win here is immense. Each player can justifiably be proud of their own effort and sacrifice to do the job,” Poša said, before adding.

“Now I’m hoping our ‘Grand Slam’ of results can be the inspiration to young Croatia players, both in Croatia and around the world, to go to the next level and compete as best we can. But for now…Večeras je naša fešta!!”

Croatia rugby claims historic promotion with victory in Israel 

(Photo credit: Berislav Rožman)

Croatia led 15-12 today at halftime but Israel would strike early in the second half to take a 19-15 lead. Croatia dominated the final half an hour and deservedly ran out 27-19 winners.

Croatia rugby claims historic promotion with victory in Israel 

(Photo credit: Berislav Rožman)

Niko Vranešević, on his first start, captain Nik Jurišić, who was playing in his 51st match for his country, Ivan Kordun and Filip Perica were Croatia’s try scorers today. Jurišić landed one conversion and a penalty whilst Niko Pavlović also converted a try. 

Croatia rugby claims historic promotion with victory in Israel 

(Photo credit: Berislav Rožman)

Croatia rugby claims historic promotion with victory in Israel 

(Photo credit: Berislav Rožman)

With today’s victory, Croatia remained unbeaten this campaign, recording wins earlier over Slovenia (48-3), Cyprus (29-8) and Malta (7-3). 

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Berislav Rožman (@b_rozman)

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