South Africa loses bid to host 2023 Rugby World Cup to France

South Africa loses bid to host 2023 Rugby World Cup to France

Government high powerful delegation headed by Deputy President Ramaphosa, Minister of Sport and Recreation TW Nxesi and SARU President Mark Alexander has travelled to London where the final announcement on whether South Africa will host the 2023 Rugby World Cup will be made.

Dick Spring, Chairman, Ireland 2023 Bid Oversight Board: "We want to congratulate France on their nomination today, by World Rugby, as hosts for the 2023 Rugby World Cup".

Going into the vote in London on Wednesday, the bid from South Africa were strong favourites following the meticulous auditing process and it was widely thought that the World Rugby council would simply ratify this decision, as they have done in past votes.

"World Rugby can confirm that it has addressed in full, clarification requests by the Rugby World Cup 2023 host candidates and council members", read World Rugby's statement.

Also commenting on the news was Rugby Players Ireland CEO, Simon Keogh said: "There is no doubt that the success of Rugby Players Ireland's members on the field has had a significant part to play in Ireland's ability to compete in this bid process".

"We can not hide our desolation but, for the sake of rugby we wish the 2023 tournament hosts every success".

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"Crazy. I wonder why they even appointed an independent firm to make a recommendation?".

When will we know the result? Football has been mired in scandal over the staging of its World Cup.

The exodus of South African players in search of better opportunities overseas continues apace, the financial state of the game there remains parlous and the once-mighty Boks suffered the worst in a succession of humbling defeats in August, 57-0 to the All Blacks.

"It would have been a huge honour and privilege for the people of Ireland to host the world for a few special weeks and for us to represent them".

Laporte toned down his cricitism after France were awarded the tournament, but admitted he believed there were aspects of the process he considered to have been unfair. In 2023, the world will descend on French ground once more.

"We've won but it's really grass-roots rugby that has won", he added.

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