World stars to come to Brisbane: reports

by Staff Writer

World rugby’s global stars will descend on Brisbane in 2017, with reports of a new global rugby 10s tournament to be played at Suncorp Stadium.

Brisbane will host the Australian Super Rugby teams and sides including Top 14 powerhouses Toulon, to be held in the second week of February, following the Sydney Sevens the Courier-Mail and Fairfax Media New Zealand reported.

New Zealand-based events company, Duco Entertainment who set up NRL’s Auckland Nines, is reportedly in the latter stages of talks with the Queensland government to set up the tournament for the next four years.

Unlike the nines, the company would reportedly set up contracts with individual teams and players to ensure the top talent shows up.

Matt Giteau could play for Toulon at Suncorp. Photo: Getty ImagesThe competition would involve 14 teams - the Australian and New Zealand Super Rugby teams, Toulon, Samoa, the Bulls and Japanese Top League side Panasonic.

That lineup would see Australian stars including Matt Giteau, Drew Mitchell and David Pocock feature in the tournament.

Teams would take squads up to 40 and prize money would be in the realm of $250,000 in the world-first event.

To put a world-first tournament of this quality together is a monumental undertaking," Duco boss David Higgins told Fairfax Media.

Sonny Bill Williams would be a major 10s drawcard. Photo: Getty Images"It's been three years of hard slog. Along the way we've thought it was on again off again, due to the complexities of bringing together a global tournament. There are still contracts to be signed, but it's looking good.

"If we pull this off, it'll be the greatest rugby tens tournament by some measure; a home run on club, player, venue quality, broadcast reach, audience reach and prizemoney.

“It's unprecedented ... From a Duco perspective, this could be the hardest event we've ever put together. It's the Mt Everest."

Tens is becoming another form of global attraction for rugby, with the Brumbies, Force, Toulon and Stade Francais all featuring in the Mauritius 10s, won by the Force.

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