Leeds Rhinos chief executive wants World Club Challenge expansion

Melbourne Storm's Sisa Waqa is tackled by Leeds Rhino's Brett Delaney on February 22, 2013
© PA Photos
Leeds Rhinos chief executive Gary Hetherington wants to see more clubs take part in the World Club Challenge, creating a world series.

Gary Hetherington has said that he would like to see the World Club Challenge extended to include more clubs across more countries.

The annual match is currently contested by the Super League champions and the winners of Australia, with Melbourne Storm having beaten Leeds Rhinos 18-14 in this year's challenge on Friday.

The Rhinos chief executive told BBC Sport: "I think the time is right to look to expand the concept. There is no doubt that the World Club Challenge generated a great deal of interest and there's a big appetite for it from sports fans in England.

"It's the best versus the best for the biggest prize of all and the players certainly produced a game that lived up to that billing. Rugby league needs to embrace the demand for global, international sporting events and this offers an ideal opportunity.

"We have seen in recent years the success that the American NFL and NBA have enjoyed by bringing fixtures to London and a concept such as this, further down the road, could prove very attractive to a number of cities around the world."

Hetherington is currently in Australia promoting his idea for the top three clubs from the Super League and NRL to take part in a world series.

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