November fixtures announced for Tier 2 Unions

(IRB.COM) Thursday 30 September 2010
 
 November fixtures announced for Tier 2 Unions
Having qualified for RWC 2011, Russia can look forward to three important matches in the autumn test schedule - Photo: Maria Anderson

The International Rugby Board has announced an exciting schedule of matches for Tier 2 Unions during the 2010 November window, ensuring that 24 of the world’s top 25 ranked teams will all be in action during the period.

The programme sees an exciting programme of matches for Rugby World Cup 2011 qualified nations Tonga, Canada, Georgia, Japan, Namibia, Russia and the USA, while Romania and Uruguay go head to head over two legs to determine the final qualification place for RWC 2011 in New Zealand.

Samoa and Fiji will also play a total of six fixtures as part of the overall Tier 1 2010 November window.

The announcement further underlines the IRB’s commitment to an expanded annual calendar for Tier 2 Nations and builds on the announcement earlier in the year of a 10 year Tours schedule that will see Tier 1 Unions playing Tests in Japan, North America and the Pacific Islands over the period.

The busy programme of international fixtures will kick-off on October 23 when Russia takes on the Argentina Jaguars in the first of two matches on consecutive weekends in Moscow.

Other highlights include Canada playing a first ever Test against Belgium on November 6 as part of their European tour, USA visiting Georgia for the first time ever to play their RWC 2011 rivals Georgia on November 27 in Tbilisi and Tonga playing matches against Italy A on November 19 and the French Barbarians on November 26.

"The November fixtures will play a significant role in the build up to RWC 2011 for those Unions that have qualified. Coaches will be looking to assess their players in a competitive test match environment and it also gives the Unions an opportunity to start testing their planning and team operations systems less than a year out from the tournament," said International Rugby Board Head of Development and Performance Mark Egan.

"Through our Strategic Investment initiatives, we are committed to investing in an international match programme for all our targeted HP and Performance Unions which gives them seven to 10 competitive games a year between IRB funded tournaments in June and the standalone test matches in November, which are underpinned by IRB funding for flights and accommodation subsidies for the touring Unions."

"We are particularly grateful to the FFR and the French Barbarians for supporting the fixture with Tonga on November 26, which will be one of the highlights of the schedule," added Egan.

List of fixtures

23-Oct

15:00

Russia v Jaguars

Int. Match

Stadium Slava, Moscow

30-Oct

15:00

Russia v Jaguars

Int. Match

Stadium Slava, Moscow

30-Oct

14:00

Japan v Samoa

Int. Match

Prince Chichibu Ground, Tokyo

06-Nov

15:30

Belgium v Canada

Int. Match

Stade Roi Baudouin, Brussels

06-Nov

14:00

Japan v Russia

Int. Match

Prince Chichibu Ground, Tokyo

13-Nov

tbc

Uruguay v Romania

RWC 2011 Play-Off

Charrúa Stadium, Montevideo

13-Nov

16:00

Spain v Canada

Int. Match

Estadio Ciudad Universitaria , Madrid

13-Nov

15:00

Portugal v USA

Int. Match

University Stadium, Lisbon

19-Nov

tbc

Italy A v Tonga

Int. Match

tbc

19-Nov

19:30

Scotland A v USA

Int. Match

Netherdale Stadium, Galashiels

20-Nov

tbc

Georgia v Canada

Int. Match

National Stadium, Tbilisi

20-Nov

15:00

Portugal v Namibia

Int. Match

Stadium Sergio Conceicao, Coimbra

26-Nov

tbc

French Barbarians v Tonga

Barbarians

tbc

27-Nov

18:00

Romania v Uruguay

RWC 2011 Play-Off

stadionul National Arcul de Triumf, Bucharest

27-Nov

15:00

Portugal v Canada

Int. Match

University Stadium, Lisbon

27-Nov

tbc

Georgia v USA

Int. Match

National Stadium, Tbilisi

27-Nov

15:45

Spain v Namibia

Int. Match

Estadio Príncipes de España, Palma de Mallorca