Rugby League World Cup 2021 organisers have today (15 July) confirmed that the 100-day countdown to the tournament has begun – with the Tees Valley set to host the Cook Islands team and match.
The event will go ahead as scheduled in October and November with the Cook Islands men’s team jetting into the region ahead of their clash with Tonga at the Riverside Stadium at 2.30pm on Sunday, 7 November.
Off the back of restrictions easing, the recent excitement surrounding the Euro 2020 tournament and ahead of the Riverside welcoming Boro fans back for the new football season next month, all the remaining Rugby League World Cup tickets are now on sale – so visit rlwc2021.com/tickets to be part of this huge international tournament.
The Cook Islands take their name from Middlesbrough-born Captain James Cook, who visited many of the nation’s southern islands. The team will be based in at Darlington’s Rockliffe Hall and train at the town’s Mowden Park while they compete in the tournament.
The Rugby League World Cup 2021 is looking to deliver the biggest and best Rugby League tournament ever and the event could attract tens of thousands of rugby fans to the area, delivering an £8million economic boost.
Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen said: “With only 100 days to go before we host the Rugby League World Cup right here in the Tees Valley, it’s great to hear of the hard work behind the scenes to ensure that this tournament can go ahead.
“We can’t wait to give the Cook Islands team a warm welcome, and their match against Tonga will undoubtedly be a fantastic clash for sports fans. As we emerge from the pandemic with restrictions easing,
“I urge the people of Teesside, Darlington and Hartlepool to grab their tickets while they still can and join the thousands of fans set to descend on the Riverside on 7 November.”
Jon Dutton, Chief Executive of RLWC2021, said: “We have an overwhelming desire to deliver the biggest and best ever Rugby League World Cup and through our determination and decisiveness we will be able to achieve this vision.
“We recognise there are still many challenges ahead, but we will work relentlessly and will take the most extraordinary measures with the support of all involved to stage the tournament in 100 days’ time.
“We have no doubt that the Rugby League family, along with the 20,021 key workers we have invited, the many fans who will see the action live in the stadiums across England and the millions watching around the world will be part of a unifying celebration of sport and humanity.”
The bid was put together by a partnership of the Tees Valley Mayor and Combined Authority, Middlesbrough Football Club, Darlington Mowden Park RFC, MFC Foundation, Middlesbrough Council and Darlington Borough Council.