International rugby league is on the crest of a wave.
England’s encouraging performance in their World Cup final defeat to Australia is already being built upon by the already announced three-match test series against New Zealand next year, all of which will be televised live by BBC.
Now there is talk of a mid-season game, also against the Kiwis, possibly taking place in Colorado, USA, according to Steve Mascord in the Telegraph.
There has long been an appetite to take a game to new territories and it had been anticipated that it would have been a World Club Challenge game.
However, with the growing clamour for more international rugby league and a higher profile much needed, a trip to the States may be on the cards, especially with eyes on Toronto Wolfpack and a possible new North American team joining the RFL structure in the not too distant future.
Last season a planned pre-season trip for England to Dubai was cancelled after much derision by clubs, fans and parts of the media; though perhaps somewhat understandable given that rugby league is banned in the UAE.
Meanwhile, with international rugby league firmly in the headlines, who will be the coach for 2018 is still up in the air.
Whether Wayne Bennett will decide, or indeed be asked, to remain in the role after two winters is as yet unknown, and Castleford boss Daryl Powell has admitted to Dave Craven of the Yorkshire Evening Post that he would “pretty foolish not to be interested” if it came up.
Bennett’s assistant and current Widnes head coach Denis Betts is also likely to be a candidate should Bennett move on. Betts lost out on the top job once before to Steve McNamara.
Who would you like to see lead England in 2018? Let us know in the comments below.