Wallaroos face Black Ferns in Rugby World Cup opener

The Wallaroos will open their Rugby World Cup account against old rivals and tournament hosts, New Zealand’s Black Ferns.

World Rugby alongside hosts New Zealand Rugby, announced the rescheduled event will take place from October 8 – November 12, 2022 in Auckland and Whangārei.

The first match of the tournament will be held at Eden Park between South Africa and France at 2:15pm local time with Australia’s opening game will start at 7:15pm local time the same day.

Australia’s next game will be in the north of the country at Northland Events Centre where they will face the winner of the Repechage tournament.

Remaining at Northlands Events Centre, the Wallaroos final match of the group stage will be against Wales on Saturday October 22 starting at 2:15pm local time.

At the conclusion of the group stages the top two teams of each pool will progress to the finals with the first two quarter finals taking place on Saturday October 29 at Northland Events Centre with Waitakere Stadium hosting the remaining two matches a day later.

Eden Park will host the semi-finals on Saturday November 5 and the bronze final and RWC 2021 final on November 12.

World Rugby RWC 2021 Tournament Director Alison Hughes said: “This is the moment when fans in New Zealand and around the world can start to plan their Rugby World Cup 2021, playing in 2022, experience.”

“We have optimised the extended tournament window to enhance player’ and fan experience at Rugby World Cup 2021.

“Increased rest periods will further boost performance and welfare, while the programme of matches being played at weekends means that fans will not miss a minute of what promises to be an exceptional tournament..”

“I would like to thank New Zealand Rugby for their huge commitment to providing a platform that enables us to showcase the best of the best as they compete for the ultimate prize – to be crowned world champions, while providing an impactful catalyst to supercharge the growth of the women’s game worldwide.”

Rugby Australia General Manager, Women’s Rugby Jilly Collins said: “Preparations for the 2022 tournament are going well. The team are looking forward to the Test Series against Samoa in July, ahead of further Test matches later in the year that we will be announcing shortly.”

“World Rugby’s decision to include the five-day rest periods into next year’s tournament is welcomed. It supports our player welfare principles and will help the Wallaroos better prepare for each Test match.”

“In addition, the new schedule allows for all matches to take place on the weekend which will mean bigger live crowds and more fans tuning in from all around the world to watch.”

Wallaroos Rugby World Cup Pool Fixtures (all times local)

Saturday, October 8: Wallaroos v New Zealand at Eden Park at 7:15pm.

Saturday, October 15: Final Qualifier v Wallaroos at Northland Events Centre at 3:00pm.

Saturday, October 22: Wallaroos v Wales at Northland Events Centre at 2:15pm

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