Sam Burgess makes Las Vegas declaration amidst Warrington Wolves rumours

Ben Olawumi
Las Vegas sign, Warrington Wolves badge, Sam Burgess, Allegiant Stadium during NRL games in 2024

Warrington Wolves head coach Sam Burgess says they'd welcome the opportunity to head to Las Vegas for a game 'on the road'

Warrington Wolves boss Sam Burgess has openly declared the club’s desire to be involved in a potential Super League game over in Las Vegas amid reports of a clash with Wigan Warriors being part of the NRL’s next trip over to America.

Burgess himself is of course somewhat of an NRL great, spending over a decade in the colours of South Sydney Rabbitohs, one of the most successful Englishmen to try their hand Down Under.

The Australian elite broke new ground at the start of this year as they took a double-header over to Las Vegas, with the Bunnies, Manly Sea Eagles, Sydney Roosters & Brisbane Broncos all involved.

Super League chief Rhodri Jones has already told the media in this country that they are looking to join the bandwagon and get sides from the British competition involved in events such as Vegas, with games being taken on the road a potential route that IMG may as they aim to help grow the sport.

Sam Burgess makes Las Vegas declaration amidst Warrington Wolves rumours: ‘Of course we’d go for it’

The belief among the Aussie press over the last week or so has been that the first Super League game held in Vegas will involve this year’s Challenge Cup finalists, Wigan & Warrington.

Matt Peet’s Warriors are the reigning Super League champions and the current holders of the World Club Challenge having beaten Penrith Panthers in February on English soil.

And in the build-up to the Wolves’ Super League clash with the Cherry & Whites this Saturday, Wire boss Burgess has stated his – and the club’s – desire to join Wigan in Vegas should an opportunity arise.

The ex-England international said: ” Of course we’d go for it. Any chance to expand our brand as a club and showcase what we think we’ve got on the world stage, then we’d be all over it, we’d love it.

“I’m good friends with (NRL chief) Peter V’landys, and I reached out to him about two or three months ago saying we’d love to be a part of it.

“I wrote to Peter just as friends, but I think it’s going to be a Wigan home game, I think they are in the driving seat of things.

“Nothing is confirmed yet, but we’d love to be a part of it.”

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Burgess delivers verdict on key to Super League success in Las Vegas: ‘It’s got to be marketed properly’

Still only 35, Burgess played 25 games for England during his career as well as two for Great Britain back in 2007. His final England run out came in June 2018 against New Zealand, winning 36-18.

That test match was played in Denver and attracted a crowd of 19,320. Skip forward circa five-and-a-half years, and the NRL’s double-header in Vegas brought in 40,746 spectators despite poor weather conditions on gameday.

As and when an opportunity for Super League to set its stall out in America arises, the Wire boss wants to see it advertised in the correct manner to give it the best chance of success.

Burgess continued: “I think if we’re doing it, it’s got to be marketed properly. We’ve got to get players out there and get their faces on TV a bit and sell it.

“I think it’s the same that we’ve got to try and do with the game here, isn’t it? Get our big name players on different avenues of media and get them more recognisable so they become more household names in Super League and in England.

“That’ll help grow the audience. For Super League, growing the profile of players and clubs and getting them out there in places that people will see, it is a good idea.

“I think we have a great product and in America they love sport, especially collision sport, and I think we offer a bit of that.

“I think the NRL have invested pretty heavily into the next four years and I think they are doing it the right way, they are taking the long-term approach, understanding it’s not going to be an overnight success but I think if year one (is anything to go by), it’ll be special by year five.”

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