South Africa backed to host the 2023 World Cup

Terry Joseph
November 1, 2017

Derry is out of the running to host games in the 2023 World Cup after South Africa was announced as the host country.

The Rugby Football Union has not yet indicated who they will support in the vote, with recently-appointed chief executive Steve Brown confirming last week that they will await World Rugby's recommendation before deciding who to throw their weight behind. Japan will host the next tournament in 2019.

According to the report card that World Rugby has issued after its independent examination of the bids, South Africa outshone its competitors in the categories of "venues and host cities" and "tournament infrastructure".

"The comprehensive and independently scrutinised evaluation re-affirmed that we have three exceptional bids", said Beaumont in a statement.

The sight of Nelson Mandela in a Springbok shirt presenting the Webb Ellis Cup to Francois Pienaar as South Africa triumphed on home soil is probably the most iconic image in the tournament's history.

An official decision will not be made until November 15 although South Africa is all but guaranteed to pip Ireland and France, with World Rugby's council unlikely to go against its board.

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"We are 100 percent confident that the commitments we made in our document will be delivered".

France scored 75.9 per cent while Ireland trailed on 72.3 per cent.

"While it is disappointing not to have received the initial recommendation there is nothing in the report which is insurmountable and this is certainly not the end of the road", said Spring.

South Africa's 2023 bid played heavily off the memories of '95, as well as its recent success in hosting the 2010 soccer World Cup, and its favorable exchange rate, which promises a cheaper World Cup experience for traveling fans than one in Europe.

"We absolutely believe Ireland can secure the tournament for 2023", said Spring.

Despite their readmission in 1992 to worldwide rugby, after years of apartheid-enforced sporting isolation, South Africa used home advantage so well that the debutants reached the World Cup final in 1995. Ireland, on the other hand, have never exclusively held the World Cup, while it has been 22 years since the tournament visited the "Rainbow Nation" of South Africa.

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