Owen Humphreys

Taoiseach Enda Kenny confident over Ireland's €1.5m Rugby World Cup bid

The IRFU’s campaign to bring the global tournament to Ireland was formally launched this morning.

THE IRFU THIS morning formally announced its intention to submit a bid to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup, supported by both the Irish Government and the Northern Ireland Executive.

The early estimation is that a world-class bid will cost in the region of €1.5million

With the GAA having previously agreed to make its stadia available for the staging of World Cup fixtures, the IRFU says its bid team will put together a specific match schedule that takes advantage of that offer.

However, no details of the stadia that will be used in the bid have been officially revealed yet. The Aviva Stadium, Croke Park, Thomond Park, The RDS, as well as other GAA grounds such as Páirc Uí Chaoimh are believed to be integrally involved.

It is expected that World Rugby [formerly the IRB] will make a decision on the host nation of the 2023 Rugby World Cup in mid 2017. The IRFU estimates that the World Cup would attract in excess of 350,000 visitors to Ireland.

Ireland will face stiff competition from South Africa and Italy for the right to host the global tournament, while Argentina have been mentioned as a further possibility.

Speaking at an event to formally launch the bid in the Royal School, Armagh this morning, Taoiseach Enda Kenny shared his confidence in Ireland’s chance of being successful:

“I am delighted to formally announce the Government’s support, in conjunction with the Northern Ireland Executive, to formally back the IRFU’s bid to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

Ireland will put together a winning bid that will be impossible to resist. We have the fans, the stadiums, and the accessibility to make it a World Cup to remember.

“Irish people love our sport. We are passionate about sport and we celebrate it. We want to share the Irish sporting experience with the world by inviting the world to Ireland.

“I’m absolutely confident that Ireland will host the 2023 Rugby World Cup. The Government will provide its full support to make it happen.”

IRFU Chief Executive, Philip Browne added:

“The IRFU believes that Ireland, and its people, will make the perfect hosts for the 2023 Rugby World Cup. The World Cup is one of the world’s major sporting events and the IRFU has been a central supporter of the tournament since its inauguration in 1987.

“I have no doubt but that Ireland can present a Rugby World Cup, which would leave a truly positive and indelible mark on the game and the world’s perception of it.”

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