By Tim Jimenez
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — One of the premier rugby teams in the world will be coming to our area in November.
Former Pennsylvania governor Ed Rendell (second from left in photo) joined USA Rugby officials and others to announce the USA Eagles national team will play the Maori All Blacks of New Zealand at PPL Park in Chester, Pa., on November 9th.
“I would love to say the All Blacks are to worldwide rugby what the Phillies are to baseball, but more accurately the All Blacks are to rugby what the New York Yankees are to baseball,” the governor said ruefully. “They’re the crème de la crème.”
And with the college championships at PPL Park this weekend, and now a high-profile international program coming in the fall, Rendell says Philadelphia is becoming the rugby capital of the country.
Local officials are expecting an economic boost of up to ten dollars in revenue for every dollar spent, so Larry Needle of the Philadelphia Sports Congress is chalking up another economic “win” for the region.
“From the US Open to three different NCAA championships… to be adding this to the list is really kind of the cherry on top,” he said today.