RFL holds “constructive” meeting with NRL ahead of Denver Test

The Rugby Football League have held what has been described as a “constructive meeting” with the NRL, its clubs and the Rugby League Players Association to allay fears over England’s match against New Zealand in Denver this June.

The match has been met with criticism from some corners of the game in Australia, with NRL clubs reportedly reluctant to release their high-profile players for the game amidst fears concerning player welfare and insurance.

But, Rimmer and the RFL met with the clubs on Tuesday – and the concerns have now been ‘comprehensively answered’.

Rimmer said: “It was great to have been given the opportunity to present on Tuesday and we held a very constructive meeting with the 16 NRL clubs, the Rugby League Players’ Association (RLPA), New Zealand Rugby League (NZRL) and NRL Executives.

“What the NRL clubs made clear was that they want international rugby league to succeed and they are supportive of us trying to grow the game. They raised important points about the test match in Denver and I believe that between the NZRL representatives and ourselves, those questions were comprehensively answered. The RLPA also confirmed that they have been provided with a level of comfort regarding their specific concerns in that area.

“We have always maintained that this mid-season Test Match between two of the world’s best Rugby League countries is vital if we are to begin to make inroads into America before the 2025 World Cup. Our England Performance Unit, led by Rugby Director Kevin Sinfield, have highlighted these mid-season tests as important preparation for the England squad as we build up to hosting a World Cup in 2021.”

“We have already heard from a number of our players about how excited they are to be playing in a match of this magnitude for their country and I am looking forward to what I believe will be a fantastic game in Denver in June.”