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Dublin: 9 °C Wednesday 12 December, 2018

New Rugby World Cup bidding process could help Ireland and other smaller nations - reports

The news comes in the wake of controversy surrounding the 2023 tournament.

The Webb Ellis Cup (file pic).
The Webb Ellis Cup (file pic).

WORLD RUGBY IS considering changing the World Cup bidding process in a move that could pave the way for smaller nations such as Ireland to host the tournament.

According to a report in The Telegraph, one option the organisation are contemplating is to combine voting on three future tournaments simultaneously, thereby increasing the likelihood that at least one country will get the chance to host the game for “developmental” reasons.

The news comes in the wake of controversy surrounding the 2023 World Cup bidding process.

Ireland had been touted as a strong contender early on, but were ultimately eliminated in the first round of voting.

An independent review recommended South Africa to host the competition, though France ultimately prevailed in the vote, with a guaranteed net revenue return of £350 million, which considerably exceeded that of their bidding rivals, perceived as a significant factor in their success.

“It is the philosophical debate that World Rugby has to have and will have,” chairman of World Rugby Bill Beaumont told the Telegraph. “Do you always chase the pound, euro or dollar? Or sometimes do we think we are going to have to take less money out of it as organisers – and our members understand the consequences of that – and we use it as a development tool to grow the game.

“It could well be in Ireland, the USA, Argentina or anywhere on the planet that where we feel that as a world body, that is where we need to put our showpiece event. It is incumbent on us to do that.”

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Paul Fennessy

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