Aviva Premiership
USA players released for All Blacks clash
ESPN Staff
October 17, 2014
Samu Manoa will face the All Blacks on November 1 © Getty Images

Premiership Rugby and USA Rugby have struck a deal which will see players made available for their game against the All Blacks on November 1.

The game falls outside the official IRB international window and under PRL regulations, teams are not permitted to release players for such matches. This stipulation would rule out players such as Northampton's Samu Manoa, Leicester's Blaine Scully and Saracens' Chris Wyles and Hayden Smith.

But the deal will see the American players available for the game against New Zealand but subsequently ruled out of their other three games in November which come against Romania, Tonga and Fiji.

Nigel Melville, CEO at USA Rugby said: 'This is a significant milestone in the development of the game in the USA. It is unfortunate that such an historic game could not be played under the Regulation 9 release window. We will be playing the world champions, New Zealand in an iconic football stadium, in front of a record 60,000 capacity crowd with a live broadcast via NBC with a reach of over 115m homes in the USA.

"It is a huge opportunity for our players, coaches and fans to participate in this game and we appreciate the support of Premiership Rugby regarding player release for the game. The other three matches in November provide opportunities for some of our younger players to play for the Eagles and to stake their claim for a place in the 2015 Rugby World Cup."

Premiership Rugby CEO Mark McCafferty added: "We have a very good relationship with USA Rugby and we have responded to their request to ensure all their best players are available to play against New Zealand, on what will be an historic occasion. As we help grow the sport in the USA, it is essential to support a match of this quality which has clearly captured the interest of the American supporters."

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