Viva Las Vegas for Super League pair

WIGAN WARRIORS and Warrington Wolves will be going to Las Vegas next year to join four NRL clubs in raising the profile of Rugby League in the United States.
A formal confirmation will be announced on Tuesday morning, after the NRL last week revealed the names of the four clubs it will send to Vegas for the opening round of the NRL season.
One of the NRL clubs will be the New Zealand Warriors, the Auckland-based club that is threatening to change the rugby landscape in the country renowned for the All Blacks union team.
The other clubs that will play at the 65,000-capacity Allegiant Stadium, home of American football’s Las Vegas Raiders, will be reigning NRL champions Penrith Panthers, Cronulla Sharks and Canberra Raiders.
There could also be a women’s Test match between Australia and England in the Rugby League extravaganza in Nevada.
NRL chiefs are keen to have a women’s match as part of the Las Vegas event, viewing it as the best way to lure potential talent from the USA.
A crowd of 40,706 at the Allegiant Stadium watched this year’s inaugural Las Vegas matches, in which Manly Sea Eagles beat South Sydney Rabbitohs and Sydney Roosters defeated Brisbane Broncos.
It’s hoped to increase that attendance with the help of the added English involvement while also attracting more television viewers.
This year the Roosters-Broncos showdown drew the largest Australasian television audience for a regular-season match in NRL history.
The NRL have a five-year Las Vegas deal, with the new Kiwi component timely.
Involvement offers the NZ Warriors, established in 1995, the opportunity to capitalise on their rising popularity, shown by a run of sell-out crowds this season.
Interest from both travelling fans and curious Americans is expected to be high.

First published in League Express newspaper, Issue 3,438 (July 8, 2024)

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