Florida hosts RWC Qualifier in NOV

For Immediate Release
October 6, 2009

Florida to Host Rugby World Cup Qualifier Event in November

BOULDER, Colo. – USA Rugby officially announced today that its Rugby World Cup Qualifier match against Uruguay will kick off at Broward County Regional Park in Lauderhill, Fla., on November 21 at 2 p.m. (EST).

“Obviously it is imperative that we reach the Rugby World Cup in 2011,” USA Men’s National Team Coach Eddie O’Sullivan said. “We allowed a great opportunity to slip away in July against Canada, but we have to put that disappointment behind us and now focus on getting a result against Uruguay.”

Even though the U.S. Men’s National Team beat Canada, 12-6, on its home turf on July 4, Canada won the point differential overall after its 41-18 win in Edmonton to clinch the Americas 1 spot in Pool A of the upcoming Rugby World Cup in New Zealand. The USA found itself playing with only 14 players for three-quarters of the match and struggled to keep any sort of pattern.

Recently promoted to an 18th global ranking by the International Rugby Board (IRB), the USA Eagles face its second chance to qualify for the Rugby World Cup as it will first face Uruguay’s Los Teros on November 14 in Montevideo, Uruguay. The Eagles will assemble in Florida on Sunday, November 8, before departing for Montevideo the following Tuesday. The teams will then meet again one week later in Florida.

The USA has a 9-1 win-loss record over Uruguay over the past 20 years, and had to challenge the South American side for their last qualification into the Rugby World Cup four years ago, winning that series by a two-game point total of 75-20.

Even with that record, O’Sullivan is adamant that the Eagles cannot be complacent, saying, “Uruguay will be a difficult test for us to overcome. They have recently put in strong performances against Russia, Romania and Scotland. With limited preparation time available before the first test we will have to hit the ground running in Montevideo.”

A four-team Final Place Playoff will be held to decide the 20th qualifying team in the Rugby World Cup. This would include the loser of this two-game series (the third place Americas team) versus the second place Asian side in a semifinal with the winner playing the victor of the European 3 team against the African 2 team to claim the final spot in the RWC.
Tickets to the USA-based Rugby World Cup Qualifying match against Uruguay will go on sale soon. Check back to www.usarugby.org for more information. For media needing further information, interviews or credentials, please contact Sara John at sjohn@usarugby.org.

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