Future Denver Tests Bumped From Schedule

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6 September 2018

England’s planned Tests against New Zealand in Denver over the next two years have been cancelled following confirmation the Kiwis will instead host Tonga reports the Yorkshire Post.

England beat New Zealand at the Mile High Stadium in June in a match that was considered a commercial success and it was hoped would be repeated in the build up to RLWC 2025 to be held in US and Canada. However, the concept met with only a lukewarm response from Australian NRL clubs whose cooperation was essential for the release of players.

The Rugby League International Federation has also welcomed the Tonga fixtures but is concerned the cancellation of the Denver match could impact on the 2025 World Cup.

RLIF chief executive Nigel Wood said: “The RLIF is excited to see these much-anticipated fixtures taking place and credit is due to all who have worked to get the game on. We hope they will pave the way for an even fuller international programme in 2019.

“The RLIF will now be seeking further discussions with the promoter to get a full understanding of any potential implications for their bid to host RLWC2025 in the United States.”

A crowd of 19,320 watched the inaugral game of the series in Denver in June. But there were subsequently questions over the finances of the game promoter, Australian-based Moore Sports International which is also the organisation running the 2025 World Cup tender on behalf of the hosts.

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