USA host Canada to kick off World Rugby Pacific Four Series 2024

The North American rivals will have WXV 1 qualification in their sights when they meet at Dignity Health Sports Park on Sunday, while USA also need points in their quest for a place at England 2025.

USA and Canada will begin their quest to qualify for WXV 1 when the World Rugby Pacific Four Series 2024 gets underway in Los Angeles this Sunday.

For the second year running the North American rivals open the tournament with a standalone fixture and the hosts will also have their sights set on confirming their place at Women’s Rugby World Cup 2025.

Canada and New Zealand have already booked their tickets to the showpiece tournament in England, thanks to their performance at RWC 2021, leaving Australia and USA to compete for the one spot available via the Pacific Four Series.

The top three at the end of the Pacific Four Series 2024, which will conclude in Australia and New Zealand between 11-25 May, will qualify for WXV 1 in Canada this September and October.


Whichever team finishes bottom of the standings next month will take their place in WXV 2 2024 in South Africa.

All the action will be available to watch live and free on RugbyPass TV where there isn’t a broadcast deal in place. Fans in Canada can keep up with the action on TSN, while Peacock will broadcast the tournament in USA and Sky Sports NZ in New Zealand.

USA lost all three matches in last year’s tournament – including a 50-17 defeat to Canada in Madrid – to finish bottom of the standings.

They head into Sunday’s opening match at Dignity Health Sports Park (kick-off 13:30, GMT-7) having won only two of their nine tests since being knocked out of RWC 2021 at the quarter-final stage by this weekend’s opponents.

That run has resulted in a drop from seventh place in the World Rugby Women’s Rankings at the beginning of 2023 to ninth ahead of the Pacific Four Series.

Although only a two-place slide it has come with the loss of 4.21 rating points and the gap between the Women’s Eagles and the top five has increased from 1.92 to 9.04 points in that same period.

Moreover, USA have not beaten Canada since July 2019 as their North American rivals have put together an eight-match winning run in the fixture.

But new USA coach Sione Fukofuka, who got his reign up and running with a win over South Africa in London last month, is confident his team has what it takes to end their five-year drought against Canada.

“One of the things that Canada do really well is they're consistent and they do the little things well,” Fukofuka said.

“They’re physical, their set piece is strong, and they work really hard. So, we know what to expect and that's actually a really positive thing.

“From our point of view, [we have] a new coaching staff, a new game plan that you would have seen a little bit of in the South Africa test and we feel that with the system changes and what we're going to look to implement there are opportunities.

“Obviously, the challenge that sits in front of us is matching their physicality, definitely, our execution at set piece and then competing with that work rate.

“The best way to sum it up is that we know the standard that Canada bring and the level that they are at, whereas we're a little bit of the unknown and what we've been working on, we're hoping is enough to put them under pressure.”

Fukofuka was appointed Women’s Eagles coach in November having previously worked for three years as an assistant coach with Rugby Australia and the Wallaroos.

He admits his knowledge of the Wallaroos could prove “crucial” in giving the USA players confidence ahead of what will be a pivotal match in terms of WXV 1 and Women’s RWC 2025 qualification at AAMI Park in Melbourne on 17 May.

That said, Fukofuka knows it’s a two-way street. “The players also know a fair bit about my coaching style,” he said.

“I'm pretty true to the way that I want the game to look and my teams to play. So, it'll be a good test – it’s set up pretty well, isn’t it?”

World Rugby Pacific Four Series 2024 fixtures

28 April – USA v Canada – Dignity Health Sports Park, kick-off 13:30 local time (GMT-7)
11 May – New Zealand v USA – FMG Stadium, kick-off 14:05 (GMT+12)
              – Australia v Canada – Allianz Stadium, kick-off 16:55 (GMT+10)
17 May – Australia v USA – AAMI Park, kick-off 16:55 (GMT+10)
19 May – New Zealand v Canada – Apollo Projects Stadium, kick-off 16:35 (GMT+12)
25 May – New Zealand v Australia – North Harbour Stadium, kick-off 14:05 (GMT+12)

Women’s Rugby World Cup 2025 is coming to England. Register now to be the first to hear about tickets.

Last updated: Apr 26, 2024, 8:01:29 PM
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