PRO12 Rugby today welcomed Independent News & Media as the official media partner of the Guinness PRO12 ‘Final Series’ ahead of the 2017 decider which will take place in Dublin’s Aviva Stadium on May 27.
With tickets sales already pointing to another record-setting occasion for the Championship, it promises to be a thrilling and dramatic run-in to the end of the regular season with former title winners such as Glasgow Warriors, Munster Rugby, Leinster Rugby, Ospreys Rugby, Scarlets and Ulster Rugby all vying to reach the ‘Final Series’.
With a record number of tries scored so far this season in the Guinness PRO12, the Championship is drawing the eye as one of the most entertaining tournaments in club rugby. The Guinness PRO12 is also home to 268 international players from across the world while those from Ireland, Scotland and Wales will be competing to make the British & Irish Lions tour to New Zealand this summer.
Coming on board as an Official Media Partner of the Guinness PRO12 ‘Final Series’, Independent News & Media’s print titles include the Irish Independent and the Sunday Independent and boast one of the largest rugby audiences in Ireland, while www.independent.ie will cater for fans of the entire Championship right across the digital sphere.
The partnership with Guinness PRO12 will allow INM readers unique insights and access to the Championship including access to the closed ‘Captain’s Runs’ at the Aviva Stadium ahead of the Final and Guinness PRO12 exclusive highlights each week on INM’s rugby show ‘The Left Wing’ and the opportunity to win exclusive prizes to the Final.
The announcement is just one of INM’s rugby partnerships, designed to deliver the most innovative, creative and premium through-the-line content for rugby fans.
The Irish Independent is the leading daily news title for reaching rugby enthusiasts with 283,000* interested readers; the Sunday Independent is the number one Sunday news title for reaching rugby enthusiasts with 406,000* readers who are interested in the topic and Independent.ie is the country’s leading news site for reaching rugby enthusiasts with 228,000* readers.
After Round 22, INM will present the 2017 ‘Try of the Year’ Award at Guinness PRO12 Awards; hold video interviews with each winner and a host of other opportunities to engage with fans and players alike.
Dermot Rigley, Commercial and Marketing Director, PRO12 Rugby, expressed his excitement about the agreement: “Partnering with Independent News & Media for our Final Series is a natural fit for the Guinness PRO12. We have a vibrant, innovative tournament that gets people talking and which makes for great content among the pages of the Irish Independent, Sunday Independent and Independent.ie,” Rigley said.
“The Guinness PRO12 Final takes place in Dublin this year on May 27 and all signs are pointing to a record-setting occasion at Aviva Stadium. In addition, we have three teams in the Champions Cup quarter-finals this weekend and another three in the Challenge Cup knock-out stages.
“When you also take into account the record-setting number of tries that are being scored in the Guinness PRO12 the tournament is a in a great place and it’s fantastic to that INM can help tell that story across their multi-media platforms,” said Rigley.
Geoff Lyons, Commercial Director, Independent News & Media said: “The announcement of INM’s Guinness PRO12 sponsorship further demonstrates our determination to reach our rugby fans across digital and social media, on and off the pitch. The Irish Independent and Independent.ie has the biggest rugby audience in the country, with 49% of our readers following the sport. This partnership with the Guinness PRO12 Final Series is another exciting development for us to take our readers on the exciting journeys of the teams they follow so passionately, across traditional and online platforms.”
Another highlight which INM is producing for fans is The Left Wing rugby show, hosted by former Leinster and Ireland international winger Luke Fitzgerald who will be available exclusively on Independent.ie. The Left Wing videos have reached over 1.5M people on Facebook.**
Former Ireland rugby international and host of The Left Wing Luke Fitzgerald said:“It’s shaping up to be an exciting year for rugby nationally and internationally and our readers are looking for more than match reports and video highlights, our insights and analyses now needs to travel across further platforms than ever before. Through this partnership with the Guinness PRO12 Final Series we can take readers with us through all of the drama at a provincial, national and international level.”
Every Wednesday, The Left Wing features Luke’s unique blend of analysis and opinion as he takes fans inside the game to give an honest and informed assessment of the performance of the Ireland team, the four provinces and at grassroots level.
Fans from all across the Championship can also ensure their place at the Guinness PRO12 Final at Aviva Stadium on May 27 by visiting www.pro12rugby.com/final or www.ticketmaster.ie where tickets start at €35