“Really, really special” women’s World Cup opener deserves a sell-out crowd at Emerald Headingley says Leeds Rhinos and England rugby director Kevin Sinfield

LEEDS RHINOS and England rugby director Kevin Sinfield hopes to see Emerald Headingley sold out for next year’s World Cup.

Thursday, 16th January 2020, 5:31 pm
Leeds Rhinos and England director of rugby, Kevin Sinfield. PIC: Jonathan Gawthorpe/JPIMedia

The ground will stage the opening game of the women’s tournament when England face Brazil on Tuesday, November 9. Sinfield played in front of a full house at Headingley last weekend in Jamie Jones-Buchanan’s testimonial match and said: “We’ve seen how good our stadium is now.

“To play on there on Sunday, albeit for a few minutes in my ‘dinner suit’, the atmosphere was unbelievable. If we can create that again throughout this year from a Rhinos’ perspective it will be brilliant.

“It is an international venue and to have England versus Brazil in the World Cup will be really, really special. They absolutely deserve everything they get, the England women, because the commitment and dedication those players put in is second to none.”

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Kevin Sinfield, left, and Rob Burrow with family, team-mates and friends at last Sunday's Emerald Headingley sell-out. PIC: Steve Riding

Sinfield admitted England’s men will be happy at being drawn against Samoa, France and Greece: “I think to start the World Cup with [England against] Samoa up at St James’ Park will be fantastic. I also think to have two European nations in the group with us is pretty good.

“We’ve had some tough battles with the French in previous World Cups and the Greek team is completely new, they’ve never qualified before and what they’ve had to do to get to this point is remarkable.”

He added: “It is exciting times for the sport.”