North America 4 set to debut
April 26, 2006

The International Rugby Board (IRB) today announced the schedule and format for the inaugural IRB North America 4 tournament that will kick-off in British Columbia on May 20. The competition will involve representative sides from Tier 2 Unions Canada and USA.

"The IRB North America 4 is an exciting new cross-border international representative competition involving around 120 of the best locally-based players from Canada and the USA," said IRB Head of Rugby Services Mark Egan. "It will provide the opportunity for future stars of the game to showcase their ability in a high-intensity, cross-border competition that will provide the perfect platform for players to push for a Test place."

Kicks-off May 20

"The competition kicks-off on May 20 and will be spilt into two blocks of matches either side of the Churchill Cup with the first block being played in Canada and the second in the USA. Each of the five rounds will be played back-to-back at the same venue and the new competition will culminate with a Grand Final on July 29."

"The IRB is committed to investing US $1 million to fund this regional tournament which is in addition to the US $1 million that is already being invested in both unions as part of the 3 year US $50 million global strategic investment programme that was launched last August," said Egan.

Global strategic investment programme

The IRB global strategic investment programme involves a considerable number of high performance, tournament and infrastructure initiatives across the 17 Tier 1 and Tier 2 Unions that are all designed to increase the competitiveness of international rugby. The North America 4 tournament provides a clear pathway for players, coaches and Union management from domestic competitions such as the USA Super league and Rugby Canada Super League.

"The positioning of the IRB North America 4 alongside the Churchill Cup and IRB Rugby World Cup 2007 qualifiers in the rugby calendar ensures that both Tier 2 Unions will have unprecedented exposure to international rugby this year," explained Egan.

New teams

The newly created teams are: USA Hawks, USA Falcons, Canada East and Canada West.

Round One sees USA Falcons take on Canada East while USA Hawks face Canada West on May 20. The matches will be played back-to-back at the Rotary Stadium, Abbotsford, British Columbia in what will be the first of five 'double-header' rounds before the final on July 29.

"With each round being played in a double-header format, the IRB North America 4 promises to deliver six exciting dates of international rugby in what should provide a spectacle for both players and supporters alike," added Egan.

2006 IRB North America 4 Schedule

Canadian Series (British Columbia)

May 20

USA Falcons v Canada East Rotary Stadium, Abbotsford (1pm)

USA Hawks v Canada West Rotary Stadium, Abbotsford (3pm)

May 24

USA Falcons v USA Hawks University of British Columbia, Vancouver (5.30pm)


Canada East v Canada West University of British Columbia, Vancouver (7.30pm)

May 27

USA Falcons v Canada West Centennial Stadium, Victoria (1pm)


USA Hawks v Canada East Centennial Stadium, Victoria (3pm)

United States Series (Ohio)
Kick off times TBC

July 22

USA Falcons v Canada East Ohio State University, Columbus


USA Hawks v Canada West Ohio State University, Columbus

July 26

USA Falcons v USA Hawks Ohio State University, Columbus


Canada East v Canada West Ohio State University, Columbus

July 29

3rd place play-off Ohio State University, Columbus

Championship Final Ohio State University, Columbus

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