Thursday, April 05, 2007

All Blacks to appear Stateside?

December 31, 2006

If true, it'd probably be a few years down the track -- but would certainly be a boost to the sport up here if it's more than just a pipe-dream...

All Blacks to hit the trail in the US

New Zealand Herald
Sunday December 24, 2006
By Gregor Paul

The All Blacks want to conquer new markets and could soon play tests in the United States and mainland Asia.

The New Zealand Rugby Union has a host of income-generating ideas on the table. This year the All Blacks played England at Twickenham for a fee. Normally the host union keeps all the gate receipts but England agreed to pay the All Blacks about NZD$3 million, knowing the stadium would sell out.

It's possible that tests under commercial arrangements will soon be played in countries such as the US and Japan. Other teams like the Junior All Blacks and Maori could also play in non-rugby countries to boost awareness and open merchandising opportunities.

NZRU chief executive Chris Moller said: "A whole range of commercial opportunities are being considered. Everything is on the table."

The NZRU wants money to reduce its dependence on broadcast and sponsorship contracts, about half its $145 million turnover.



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