BBC Sport is set to revive the excitement of last autumn’s Rugby League World Cup by offering live and exclusive coverage of five international matches involving three England rugby league teams this autumn. This lineup includes a highly anticipated rematch of the unforgettable Wheelchair Final between England and France.
The World Cup-winning team led by Tom Halliwell will make their return to the field for the first time since their thrilling 28-24 victory against the French. This rematch promises to be a captivating encounter and will take place at the First Direct Arena in Leeds on Sunday, November 5. The match will be broadcast live on BBC Two and available on BBC iPlayer.
The Wheelchair International match will follow a doubleheader of England Rugby League action at Headingley on Saturday, November 4. The day will kick off with the England Women’s team facing off against Wales Women at 12 pm (broadcast on BBC Two and available on BBC iPlayer), followed by the final Test of the Men’s series against Tonga at 2:30 pm (broadcast on BBC One and available on BBC iPlayer).
The entire series will also be accessible on BBC One, BBC iPlayer, and BBC Sport Online. It all begins with the first Test between England and Tonga at the Totally Wicked Stadium in St Helens on Sunday, October 22 – just eight days after the Betfred Super League Grand Final at Old Trafford.
This series marks the inaugural face-off between England and Tonga, and their first meeting since the gripping World Cup semi-final in 2017, when England managed to hold off a thrilling late comeback in Auckland.
Barbara Slater, Director of BBC Sport, remarks, “All 61 matches of last year’s exhilarating Rugby League World Cup, spanning the Men’s, Women’s, and Wheelchair tournaments, were broadcast live on the BBC. It was an honour to be the home of that tournament, and it’s an honour to continue broadcasting live Rugby League internationals on free-to-air television. Alongside the England Men’s series against Tonga and the home nation Women’s clash between England and Wales, it is an enticing prospect to have a rematch of last year’s thrilling Wheelchair final between England and France live on BBC Two, BBC iPlayer, and BBC Sport Online.”
Rhodri Jones, the Managing Director of Rugby League Commercial, adds, “We are pleased to confirm both the return of the England Wheelchair team to action on November 5 with a rematch against France, and that BBC Sport will provide coverage to the nation of all five of our home England internationals this autumn. Last year’s World Cup was such a positive event for the sport, with huge support for our three England teams as they won 10 games out of 10 to reach the Semi Finals of the Men’s, Women’s and Wheelchair competitions, and the Wheelchair team going on to be crowned world champions on a truly memorable night in Manchester.”
“BBC Sport’s coverage ensured that the success of all three teams was celebrated by the widest possible audience, and now we can look forward to a repeat in 2023. With confirmation of a first Wheelchair Rugby League International in the superb facilities of the First Direct Arena the following day, it promises to be a memorable weekend of Rugby League in Leeds.”
Autumn Internationals coverage details:
Sunday 22 October: England Men vs. Tonga Men, first Test at Totally Wicked Stadium, St Helens – 2.30 pm, BBC One & BBC iPlayer
Saturday 28 October: England Men vs. Tonga Men, second Test at John Smith’s Stadium, Huddersfield – 2.30 pm, BBC One & BBC iPlayer
Saturday 4 November: England Women vs. Wales Women, Headingley Stadium, Leeds – 12 pm, BBC Two & BBC iPlayer
Saturday 4 November: England Men vs. Tonga Men, third Test at Headingley Stadium, Leeds – 2.30 pm, BBC One & BBC iPlayer
Sunday 5 November: England Wheelchair vs. France Wheelchair, First Direct Arena, Leeds – 3.15 pm, BBC Two & BBC iPlayer.