Wembley set for Four Nations launch - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Wembley set for Four Nations launch

By Ian Laybourn 04/04/2011 10:41:56 PM Comments (0)

Wembley looks set to host the opening matches of this year's Four Nations rugby league series.

The Rugby Football League are planning to launch the tournament with a double header featuring England against Australia and newcomers Wales against New Zealand.

It would be the first international rugby league match to be staged at Wembley since 1997 when, in front of an attendance of 41,135, Great Britain lost to an Australian team split by the Super League war.

England have not played at the national stadium since the 1995 World Cup final when Australia were again the victors in front of a 66,540 crowd.

Since then, the RFL have opted to stage internationals at smaller stadia in the game's heartland but October's match could be a forerunner for the 2013 World Cup which is being hosted by the RFL and held in England and Wales, with venues due to be announced this autumn.

A RFL spokesman said: "We are not in a position to confirm the details as yet but we are sure rugby league fans around the country would welcome the return of international rugby league to one of the best sporting stadiums in the world."

Despite suggestions the Australia-New Zealand game would take place in the southern hemisphere, as has happened in the past, it is almost certain to be held in the northern hemisphere.

Meanwhile, the RFL will announce details of the mid-season international on Wednesday.

It is expected England will take on an Exiles team drawn from Super League-based Australians and Kiwis on the weekend of June 10-12.

The fixture will take the place of the traditional mid-season international against France which has proved to be a one-sided affair in recent years.

Former New Zealand coach Brian McClennan, out of a job since stepping down at Leeds last October, is tipped to take charge of the Exiles.

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