Marlie Packer eyes World Cup sellout after England clinch Six Nations Grand Slam
Marlie Packer believes England can sell out Twickenham before the 2025 World Cup final after the Grand Slam was completed in front of a crowd of 58,498.
France were edged 38-33 in a riveting Tik Tok Women’s Six Nations title decider that set a new record attendance for a women’s game, surpassing the previous highest of 42,579.
The Rugby Football Union has targeted a full house for the World Cup final when it hosts the tournament in two years’ time, but Packer believes that on the evidence of Saturday that goal could arrive earlier.
“For me as a Red Rose, I want to sell out Twickenham,” said England’s captain after the first standalone women’s match to be staged at Twickenham.
“I believe we can do it and I believe we can do it before 2025 for the World Cup final. Look at today – we weren’t a curtain raiser, it was all about us.
“The other nations are closing the gap and getting professional contracts, so the quality of the games is getting better and not just England v France games.
“Everything is on the rise so more tickets will be sold and more stadiums will sell out.”
While Packer sees the possibilities at Twickenham, the Saracens openside is keen for England to continue their policy of playing at Premiership grounds.
“When we take the Red Roses on the road, we get fans in from all over the country. We’re a brand and we want to keep selling our brand,” Packer said.
𝗬𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝟮𝟬𝟮𝟯 𝗚𝗥𝗔𝗡𝗗 𝗦𝗟𝗔𝗠 𝗰𝗵𝗮𝗺𝗽𝗶𝗼𝗻𝘀 ❤️#RedRoses | #TikTokW6N pic.twitter.com/LvptursliX
— England Rugby (@EnglandRugby) April 29, 2023
“Yes it would be great to play at Twickenham every time and that in itself will come in time, but we need to keep building our fanbase.”
England led 33-0 at half-time but France hit back with five tries in a tense finish.
“We had done enough in the first-half and we took our points in the second-half to finish off the game,” Packer said.
“But we’ll look back at this game to see what we need to work on in the second-half. We got the victory and that’s what we came here to do today.”
France captain Audrey Forlani admitted her side failed to do themselves justice as they slipped to a 33-0 interval deficit.
“In the first-half, that is not a true reflection of our team,” Forlani said.
“If you look at the second-half, that is our real team. We need to keep working and keep that second half in mind.”