Tigers tackle the Americans

The Helensburgh Tigers have been invited by USA Rugby League to contest the 2011 Atlantic Cup in Florida this month.Helensburgh have developed a close relationship with the Jacksonville Axemen from the USARL over the past few years with the Tigers providing their two allowed ‘‘Australian Import’’ players for the past few seasons.Brent Shorten, a former Tiger, was the Jacksonville captain and a member of the American Tomahawks squad in 2010.‘‘This is the first year that a club team has been invited to contest the Atlantic Cup,’’ Helensburgh spokesman Gavin Lennon said.‘‘Last season it acted as a World Cup qualifying round between the USA, Jamaica and Canada.‘‘This year we will be playing against the British Police and the USARL representative team, the Jacksonville Axemen.’’Helensburgh’s touring squad comprises members from their first and second grade and VB Cup teams, along with former Tigers players and members from teams in Illawarra Carlton League and Country Rugby League.The Tigers won the VB Cup premiership and were grand finalists in first grade and finalists in second grade in the 2011 season.Games on the November 20 to December 3 tour will be played at Hodges Stadium at University of North Florida in Jacksonville.The Helensburgh tourists will also do some sightseeing in Miami, Orlando and New York before finishing their trip in Las Vegas.

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