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Halifax CFL group says Moncton contest success not critical to long-term goal

Anthony LeBlanc of Schooners Sports and Entertainment is confident the University of Moncton stadium will be 'close to full' by kickoff
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New CFL balls are photographed at the Winnipeg Blue Bombers stadium in Winnipeg (John Woods/CP)

HALIFAX — A member of the business group trying to land a CFL franchise for Halifax says the perceived success or failure of Sunday's Touchdown Atlantic game in Moncton, N.B., will have little bearing on its long-term goal.

Anthony LeBlanc of Schooners Sports and Entertainment is downplaying any suggestions that a low turnout to watch the Montreal Alouettes battle the Toronto Argonauts will have a negative effect as the group prepares to submit a business case to municipal officials in Halifax by the end of the month.

With reports earlier this week of lagging ticket sales, LeBlanc says he is confident the University of Moncton stadium, which seats a little over 10,000 in permanent seats, will be "close to full" by the 1 p.m. kickoff.

LeBlanc says while the regular-season game is a chance for Atlantic Canada to shine on the national stage, it is "kind of irrelevant" to the prospect of landing a franchise on the East Coast.

Halifax Mayor Mike Savage agrees that what happens after Sunday is more of a concern than the Moncton game.

Savage says the regional council needs to see a formal business case that has "been a long time coming" before any decisions are made to support a potential CFL bid and stadium for Halifax.

The Canadian Press




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