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Rugby

Oregon selected to host 2008 IRB North America 4 Tournament

    The International Rugby Board has announced the playing schedule for the 2008 IRB North America 4. The popular cross-border competition, that involves two elite representative teams from both Canada and the USA, will kick off in Toronto on May 17. On July 10, the USA Hawks will take on the USA Falcons in the round one match at Mount Hood Community College in Gresham. The match is scheduled to kick off at 6:30PM.

    “The IRB North America 4 is now firmly established as the premier player and coach development tool in North America. Since its inauguration in 2006, the Tournament has proven to be an important testing ground for future stars of the international Game, bridging the gap between club level and the Test arena,” said IRB Head of Rugby Services Mark Egan.

    “North America is a major growth market for Rugby, as highlighted by enhanced Rugby World Cup 2007 broadcast interest for the region. The Game is flourishing in both countries and the North America 4 has played a key role in heightening the profile of Rugby, while serving the purpose of identifying a pool of talent capable of performing at Test level,” added Egan.

    Over 80 percent of the players representing Canada and the USA at Rugby World Cup 2007 had participated in the NA4 Tournament and USA Rugby Chief Executive Officer Nigel Melville believes that the IRB North America 4 serves as an invaluable preparation tool for the Test arena.

    “The IRB North America 4 continues to be an important part of our player development pathway. We see players play at club level, we see players train, but we need to see players compete against really tough opposition in order to select them for international games. The NA4 is a tough test for all our players, it gives them valuable experience and makes them better international prospects,” he said.

    The Oregon Sports Authority and Rugby Oregon helped bring the match to Mt. Hood Community College. The event will serve as a fundraiser for Rugby Oregon, a non-profit youth sports organization, dedicated to the growth and development of youth rugby in Oregon. Tickets for the event are $10. For more information, please visit RugbyOregon.com or narugby.com.

    The Tournament kicks off with two-time defending champions Canada West taking on Canada East in Toronto on May 17, before the Barclays Churchill Cup gets under way. The Tournament resumes in July with the Hawks/Falcons match at Mount Hood Community College. Two more pool rounds will follow in Canada, before the IRB North America 4 semifinal and final rounds are played at Glendale Infinity Park, near Denver, Colo., on July 29 and August 2, respectively.


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