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US & Japan may host Bledisloe Cup

BLEDISLOE CUP
Venue: Hong Kong Stadium Date: Saturday, 1 November Kick-off: 0830 GMT Coverage: Live on Sky Sports Xtra. Live scores on BBC Sport website

Bledisloe Cup
The Bledisloe Cup is being played in Hong Kong this weekend

Australia and New Zealand are considering playing a Bledisloe Cup match in both the United States and Japan over the next two years.

The two great rivals face each other in Hong Kong this weekend with the match expected to be a sell-out.

Australia rugby boss John O'Neill said: "We have got a formal proposal from Denver to host the Cup next year.

"We are also talking to the Japanese about the possibility of holding the game in 2010 in Tokyo."

Saturday's Hong Kong Test will be the first time the pair have met in the Bledisloe Cup outside either Australia or New Zealand.

The fixture, which is understood to have generated just over 5.5m in revenue, will be their fourth encounter in 2008, with the other three taking place in the Tri-Nations.

O'Neill and New Zealand chief Steve Tew said they were open to the idea of taking fixtures between the pair around the globe.

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"We've got several opportunities in front of us for 2009 and 2010, not necessarily Bledisloe Cup games but for additional games for the All Blacks - we're working through those quite seriously," Tew said.

"The Denver game has been mentioned in the media. It's fair to say both Australia and New Zealand have ticked the box that we should explore that further and we will have discussions on that this week."

New Zealand go into the match having won two of the three Tests between the two sides so far this season.

That means that even if Australia win Saturday's match to level the 2008 Bledisloe Cup series at 2-2 the All Blacks - as the current holders - will retain the trophy.

It was first awarded to the winning team in matches between the two antipodean rivals in 1932. The All Blacks have held it since 2003.

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see also
Five changes to Wallabies line-up
30 Oct 08 |  Rugby Union
Zinzan Brooke column
28 Oct 08 |  Rugby Union
Seven new faces in NZ tour squad
25 Oct 08 |  Rugby Union
All Blacks magic: New Zealand rugby
21 Oct 08 |  Rugby Union
Boks pick home stars for GB tour
25 Oct 08 |  Rugby Union
Australia 24-28 New Zealand
13 Sep 08 |  Rugby Union


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