TIM Rumford says there is a lot of excitement in the air as Oxford RL take to the skies to face Toronto Wolfpack this weekend.

The Blues make the 3,500-mile trip to Canada today ahead of Saturday’s fixture against the Kingstone Press League 1 newcomers.

Oxford are the first team to take on the professional outfit this season at the 9,600-capacity Lamport Stadium.

The trip to North America, which is fully paid for by their hosts, will be a far cry from what the Blues, who play their home games at Tilsley Park, Abingdon, are used to, with television cameras pitchside.

Head coach Rumford said: “It’s really exciting, but at the same time it’s a little bit daunting for the fledgling clubs to go over there and compete.

“However, it’s an experience and if we’re part of the journey of growing the game, that’s how we’ve got to attack it.”

Oxford’s players will also be coming up against a side who, according to Rumford, could compete in the Betfred Super League, and are led by former Great Britain coach Brian Noble as director of rugby.

Wolfpack attracted players from the sport’s top-flight and Kingstone Press Championship, as well as New Zealand and Australia, in the winter.

They sit top of League 1 with five wins from five, scoring an average of 46 points per match.

Rumford, whose side sit tenth, added: “We just need to keep everyone’s feet on the ground.

“There will be TV cameras, it’s going to be pretty wild, but we’re going to go there and really try to make a case for rugby league in Oxford and we want to do ourselves proud.”

Toronto boast a sponsorship deal with airline company Air Transit and will pay for all visiting clubs’ travelling expenses.

It is a similar deal to that provided last season by French side Toulouse Olympique, who now play in the Championship.

Rumford said: “We had Toulouse in our league last year and they were tremendously serious.

“We were looked after from getting on the plane, landing there and the hotel – everything was spot on.”