AUSTIN (KXAN) — Q2 Stadium has quickly become one of the most difficult places to play for opposing teams in the MLS in just its second year of existence. Later this summer, Premier Rugby Sevens will take the field at Q2, marking the first time in the short history of the stadium that a sport other than soccer will be played there.
“We’re just competing at a high level, some of the most skilled athletes in the world,” said Premier Rugby Sevens star and USA Olympian Matai Leuta. “You know, coming to showcase what they have to offer. And just, it’s a battle on the field. It’s a great time in the stands. [Fans], they can look forward to an unforgettable experience.”
This week at Q2, Leuta met with Austin FC defender Nick Lima to exchange jerseys. The two also threw and kicked a rugby ball around, teaching each other a thing or two about their respective sports.
“[Leuta is] a great teacher,” joked Lima. “I think he’s got coaching in his future. It’s pretty cool. A lot of respect for these athletes and what they do, especially physically.”
“[Lima] is a quick learner,” Leuta added about the soccer defender. “I mean, if he’s up to it, we might recruit him for a few games.”
The Premier Rugby Sevens is a new league that will bring eight teams, four male and four female, on a three city tour. Austin will be the final of three and the site where champions will be crowned.
“I’ve been a professional rugby player for seven years, so to see this come to fruition, to see other cities taking it on,” added Leuta. “It’s an excitement just to be able to see the future generations of rugby players coming up and wanting to take on the sport and push it to new levels here in America.”
The teams will start at Q2 at 3 p.m. on Saturday, July 30. Tickets are available on SeatGeek.