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Super League coach tips possible new rugby league super power

With the NRL openers headed to Las Vegas as the sport tries to crack the American audience, one current Super League head coach has claimed that USA could possibly become the sport’s new powerhouse nation.

That man is Paul Rowley, Salford Red Devils’ head coach, and he’s taken to his LinkedIn to discuss the NRL’s American trip and what the possibilities could be for the sport.

The NRL season will open with a doubleheader at Las Vegas’ Allegiant Stadium as Manly Sea Eagles take on South Sydney Rabbitohs and Sydney Roosters face 2023 runners-up Brisbane Broncos.

Taking to his LinkedIn, Rowley commented: “As the inaugural coach of the world’s only ever trans-Atlantic rugby league team, I feel qualified to share my opinion on the opportunity that presents itself and wonder what the objective actually is. I see two realistic goals:

“To tap into the USA’s sporting riches and secure enough interest to land what would be rugby league’s most lucrative TV deal – delivering the world’s toughest rugby league competition to an American audience through their TV screens.

“To create a thriving American league that presents another sporting pathway for USA’s young athletes – of which there are many.”

Rowley would then conclude that second point by stating: “There is of course the possibility that USA becomes the worlds best and eventually call the shots.”

“The sky is the limit” – Former Super League star backs sport in America

Another person who commented on the games over in America and was also a part of the Toronto Wolfpack experiment was Ashton Sims.

The hard-hitting forward swapped Warrington Wolves for the Wolfpack and got to experience what rugby league in North America was like.

Speaking to NRL.com, the former Super League forward explained: “They are just incredibly built – big, strong, fast, evasive and agile – but obviously without the skills you learn from having grown up playing rugby league, like catch, pass and tackle technique.

“But if you put the right time, energy, resources and coaching into them, which it looks like the NRL is doing, you are going into a market where I truly believe the sky is the limit.”

Sims continued by explaining that rugby league is now more well-known in North America and so that the opportunity is far greater than when the Wolfpack first formed.

“I don’t think the game has ever been in a stronger position than now to branch out and try to get into new markets,” Sims said.

“If we can break into that North American market, the possibilities are endless.

“That could be the start of taking the game into all different parts of the globe and changing rugby league from just being a sport played in Australia, England, New Zealand and the Pacific heartland to a real global game.”

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