(CHICAGO) July 3, 2023 – The San Diego Legion and New England Free Jacks will face off in the Major League Rugby Championship Final on Saturday, July 8, after winning their respective conferences. This is the Free Jacks’ first visit to the Championship Final, while the Legion will try for a second time to capture the shield.
MLR’s new expansion team, the Chicago Hounds, will host the championship match on July 8th at 3:00 p.m. EST at SeatGeek Stadium in Bridgeview, Illinois. DJ Diesel, otherwise known as Shaquille O’Neal, and American Celtic band Dropkick Murphys are set to perform before and after the championship match. The day of festivities will include the Dawg Town Block Party fan festival, showcasing the best of Chicago rugby and culture through Windy City-themed vendors, musicians, and drinks, as well as a youth rugby tournament, high-performance combine, social sevens tournament, and rugby 101 sessions.
“It’s been a competitive, and exhilarating season from both of these teams“, said MLR CEO Nic Benson. “They’ve competed fiercely all year, and next week will be the culmination of their quest for the MLR shield and a showcase of the best rugby North America has to offer. We are incredibly proud of our players, and of the coaches and staff who support them, for the dedication, passion, and integrity they’ve showcased throughout the 2023 MLR season.”
MLR will announce the winner of the S. Marcus Calloway Community Impact Award Presented by Fastenal during halftime of the championship match. Named after the late S. Marcus Calloway, the founder of Rugby ATL and prominent rugby and MLR advocate who passed away in December of 2021, the annual award is given to the player who shows excellence on and off the field, inspires others to action, shows strength in character, aids those less fortunate, and embraces the core values of rugby, while displaying solidarity, discipline, and respect.
Tickets for the MLR 2023 Championship match are now on sale and include access to all of the day’s festivities.
About Major League Rugby:
Major League Rugby is a professional sports league in its sixth season that represents the highest level of rugby competition in North America. The League evolved from seven teams in 2018 to 12 teams in 2023, featuring 11 from the United States and one from Canada. Matches are televised on Fox Sports, among other national and local market platforms. Select matches are available to stream live in North America on The Rugby Network, and all matches are available on The Rugby Network for international fans. MLR prides itself in fostering intense and high-stakes competition, while bringing together a passionate community built on the values of Respect, Inclusivity, and Tradition. For more information about MLR, visit www.MajorLeague.Rugby.
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