The Rugby Football Union and the New Zealand Rugby Union today announced the dates and venues for England’s three-Test tour in June 2014. The Tests will be on June 7, 14 and 21 in Auckland, Dunedin and Hamilton, with a midweek game against the Crusaders between the 2nd and 3rd Tests.
England Head Coach Stuart Lancaster said: “To play the World Champions in their own back yard is the ultimate test. We saw in the Rugby Championship and the QBE Internationals what a formidable team and rugby nation New Zealand is.
“This is our final tour before the World Cup and is massively important for us to benchmark ourselves against the number one team in the world. Playing three Tests and a midweek match will give us the opportunity to take 35 to 40 players who will get a chance to lay down a marker 15 months out from the World Cup.”
New Zealand Rugby Chief Executive Steve Tew said: “We are very excited to be hosting England next year. England have proven in their recent matches with the All Blacks just how tough an opponent they are so we hope this series will be a huge draw card for fans.
“It’s great to be taking England to Dunedin. I am sure they have plenty of fond memories from their time in there during Rugby World Cup where they played three matches. England and Argentina also had the privilege of being the first nations to enjoy the excellent facilities of Forsyth Barr Stadium during the opening weekend of the World Cup.
“England, like France last year, were keen to add a mid-week match to their itinerary so it’s great that we can provide them a high quality opponent in the Crusaders after the second Test in Dunedin. Given the heritage shared by England and Canterbury, this is sure to be a very special night.”
England tour to New Zealand 2014 (kick-off times to be confirmed)
Saturday, June 7: 1st Test v New Zealand – Eden Park, Auckland
Saturday, June 14: 2nd Test v New Zealand – Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin
Tuesday, June 17: Crusaders – AMI (Addington) Stadium, Christchurch
Saturday, June 21: 3rd Test v New Zealand – Waikato Stadium, Hamilton
Photo by: Patrick Khachfe / Onside Images