France wins 2023 Rugby World Cup in shock decision
France wins 2023 Rugby World Cup in shock decision
France to host 2023 Rugby World Cup
15 November, 2017, 15:28
Cape Town - South African rugby lovers were left stunned as France was awarded the rights to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup.
Still eager to host the spectacle, France and Ireland had both launched campaigns in an effort to rope in support, insisting there were concerns with the committee's findings, which listed South Africa as outright favourites.
The Irish bid particularly struggled with venues and host cities while the bid also paled with regards to tournament infrastructure.
South Africa hosted the iconic 1995 edition - which saw the first black president of the country, Nelson Mandela, adorned in a Springbok jersey, then seen as one of the pillars of white apartheid rule - handing the trophy to white South Africa captain Francois Pienaar.
The chief executive of the IRFU, Phillip Browne, went as far as to write a letter to World Rugby outlining his grievances.
That earned a rebuke from World Rugby, which closed all feedback with the bid candidates last Friday.
The country has large, ready-made stadiums already available for the World Cup, while most of those contained in Ireland's bid are smaller. "That's the fact. We owe it to ourselves‚ the Government and people of Ireland‚ who have been very enthusiastic‚ to fight to the end for it".
The evaluation report that recommended South Africa appeared to dismiss any possible problem, saying: "SA Rugby confirmed that..."
No, it was done by secret ballot with the votes counted by an independent auditor.
"They do not impact on the detail or outcomes of the evaluation report nor on the subsequent recommendation". In contrast, Ireland's bid makes a commitment to assuring capacity attendances at all lower demand pool matches. "We now look forward to council making its decision in London on 15 November".
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