Tuesday, April 14, 2015

NRFL: Philadelphia to host professional match against Leicester Tigers

Photo NRFL
The dream of professional rugby in the Americas is quickly approaching. Commencing in 2016 Argentina is to play in Super Rugby while further north the USA is on course to go professional this coming summer. The National Rugby Football League (NRFL) is the upcoming professional rugby competition which is planned to get underway this year. In an effort to heavily promote it the NRFL has organized for a intercontinental match between the newly formed Rough Riders and the most successful professional team in English rugby history, the Leicester Tigers in August. 

Scheduled to be played at the home stadium of the Philadelphia Eagles in the NFL, Lincoln Financial Field, the Independence Cup will make history by playing host to the first professional game of rugby in the USA. 

The match is to be played on Saturday August 8 with a 3pm kick-off. Tickets are to go on sale later this week, on April 17. The selection of the date is of great interest to the USA's own rugby community as much as it is to the global rugby community. It is to be slightly more than one month before the start of Rugby World Cup 2015 thus enabling the involvement of a number of marque USA Eagles squad members. 

The Rough Riders team is to consist of a collection of the best professional rugby prospects who have been working out in the NRFL's first two combines. The team will consist of former NFL players, former college football players, collegiate and club rugby players and international players.  Combined the team's players are to represent a 'made in America' heritage. Tickets are to be made available on www.ticketmaster.com or by calling 1-800-745-3000

By 2019 all of the World Rugby defined regions will have hosted the Rugby World Cup at least once. That is, except for the Americas. Later this year England and Wales are to host the World Cup for the third and fourth time. Argentina is interested in hosting in 2023 with former captain and World Rugby representative, Agustín Pichot having made this well known. With both Argentina and the USA having professional rugby the Americas continues to becoming increasingly important to the sport now and in the future.  

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