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Dublin: 9°C Saturday 17 April 2021

Wales won't cash in historic claim to 20% of Ireland's Rugby World Cup profits

It’s good news for Ireland’s 2023 bid – and good news for World Cup organisers.

THE WELSH RUGBY Union has agreed to end a 19-year-old agreement which would have seen Ireland pay them 20% of any profit if the IRFU’s bid to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup is successful.

Last month the IRFU said they would engage with the WRU to discuss the old deal. Struck between the Five Nations teams of the day, the arrangement paved the way for Wales to be the main host of the 1999 Rugby World Cup with other nations also providing venues in that tournament.

Jamie Heaslip dejected after the game Cardiff hosted matches in both the 2007 and 2015 World Cups. Source: Dan Sheridan/INPHO

The reciprocal voting agreement reportedly included a clause which would require Ireland to pay at least 20% of the profits to the WRU if a future World Cup is hosted here.

After negotiations and with the IRFU and Rugby World Cup Ltd, the WRU board voted to annul that deal at a meeting yesterday.

“The general consensus from the board was that, whilst the WRU had claim to compensation as part of any bid from the IRFU, the spirit of the original agreement has already been fulfilled,” said WRU chairman Gareth Davies.

Banner for Ireland 2023 Rugby World Cup bid Source: Billy Stickland/INPHO

“The best thing for the selection process is for us to be able to put an end to any speculation about this historical agreement and we are pleased to do so.

A statement from RWCL today welcomed the decision as they pointed to the need to safeguard the integrity of the host selection process, which would obviously be impacted by historical agreements.

The IRFU is a Rugby World Cup 2023 candidate union and RWCL’s responsibility is to ensure and protect the integrity of the host selection process, which continues to be conducted in line with the highest standards of transparency, fairness and professionalism.

“RWCL is satisfied that the proactive action taken today by the WRU will appropriately protect the integrity of the Rugby World Cup 2023 host selection process.

“RWCL would like to thank the IRFU and the WRU for their full cooperation and support.”

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About the author:

Sean Farrell

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