01/10/2008

Ireland Bids For World Cup Glory

While Jamaica's unlikely bid has now been withdrawn, eight countries are now bidding to host the 2015 Rugby World Cup, including Ireland.

The nations confirming their intention to tender for the 2015 tournament were: Australia, England, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Scotland, South Africa and Wales.

Some of them, including Ireland, have also made bids for the 2019 event.

"This strong response is unprecedented and truly reflects the global attraction of the rugby World Cup," International Rugby Board (IRB) Chairman Bernard Lapasset said in a statement.

"It also reflects the significant economic benefits that accompany the hosting of a tournament that has grown in stature and prominence as a global event."

However, bids are not cheap as the IRB has slapped a £100m price tag on hosting the 2015 event and £120m on the 2019 which has recently led to both the Welsh and Scottish Unions calling for all four home unions to put in a joint bid.

In another fresh development, for the first time, the IRB will award two tournaments at the same time, giving the successful bidders more planning time. The decision will be announced in July 2009.

The 10 bidding Unions now have until May 8, 2009 to submit their detailed Tender responses to RWCL.

New Zealand, who hosted the first World Cup in 1987, will hold the next one in 2011 having controversially beaten off Japan in the vote in November 2005.

(BMcC)

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