Hull will face Wigan in Australia next year

Hull FC will take on Wigan in Australia in 2018 for the first Super League game to ever take place outside of Europe.

Important details:

Date: 10 February 2018

Venue: WIN Stadium in Wollongong

A week after the game, both sides will then take on Australian opponents. Wigan will face the South Sydney Rabbitohs, whilst Hull will face St George Illawarra Dragons. Both games will be in Sydney.

If either side qualifies, it will open the door for them to take part in the World Club Challenge or Series, which starts on the 24th of February.

Shane Wane’s Wigan side have previously played in Australia, when they were defeated 36-14 by the Sydney Roosters in 2014 during the World Club Challenge, but the Warriors will be hoping for a sweeter outcome this time around.

Warriors chairman Ian Lenagan said:

“We firmly believe that the Wigan and Hull fans will be as excited about this venture as we are and we have announced early to allow fans the chance to plan their trip to Australia.”

Whilst Hull chairman Adam Pearson also spoke:

“There will be a great deal of excitement from fans of both clubs and we’re sure many will want to travel to New South Wales for such an historic occasion, support their team and help showcase all that is good about rugby league in the UK.”

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Sir Clive Woodward: “English Rugby Union is a laughing stock.”

Source: The Guardian

Former-English national team coach Sir Clive Woodward believes English Rugby Union has become a “laughing stock”, after it was revealed that Sam Burgess was to leave Bath to return to Rugby League in Australia.

Burgess made his decision after the disappointing Rugby World Cup campaign from the hosts, a squad he was a part of.

Woodward does not blame the now South Sydney Rabbitohs player for what he calls an “all-time low” and a general “mess” for the English rugby union game.

The 2003 World Cup winning coach was not the only notable figure in the sport to speak out following the announcement, as current head coach for the England team Steve McNamara said Burgess could have gone on to become “one of the greats”.

Burgess scored four tries in his one year stay at Bath, having played a total of 21 matches for the Somerset team.

Woodward spoke about the RFU and the way they had been wrongly congratulating themselves in recent years for the direction English rugby had been heading in.

“The RFU has spent the last four years congratulating itself on the direction in which we’re heading, but the truth is we have marched confidently into a total mess.

“We are the laughing stock of not only world rugby but also sport and business. The rest of the world says those involved in English rugby are arrogant. I hate this reputation, but that is exactly what the RFU has been.

“The saddest part is the players and fans have been let down. To get it right on the field of play you have to get it right off the field.”