Delegates arrive to assess SA's 2023 RWC bid

2017-03-14 11:15
Mark Alexander (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - World Rugby delegates arrived in South Africa on Monday to assess the country's bid to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup. 

The timing, on the surface, could not be worse.

Coinciding with their arrival, news broke that Durban had lost the right to host the 2022 Commonwealth Games due to financial constraints and reported missed deadlines from the local organising committee. 

When contacted by Sport24 on Tuesday, SA Rugby did not want to comment on the impact that losing the Commonwealth Games could potentially have on the World Cup bid, but there is the hope that the developments this week will lead to more resources being placed in securing South Africa's first Rugby World Cup since 1995.

The good news is that South Africa has existing infrastructure to accommodate the tournament. 

The delegation will be in the country until Wednesday before moving on to examine the bids of Ireland (March 21-22) and France (March 30-31).

Sport24 understands that this week's inspection is more to ensure that South Africa has its bidding documentation in order and it will not be a case of tournament organisers looking at stadiums and logistical plans. 

There is, however, a potentially crucial meeting pencilled in for Wednesday in Johannesburg that will see the World Rugby delegation meeting with national government. 

Government will need to ensure that the country is capable of hosting rugby's marquee event. 

SA Rugby president Mark Alexander was the chairperson of the 2022 Commonwealth Games bid committee, but he is understood to have had nothing to do with the bid since Durban was awarded the Games back in September 2015. 

Alexander was unveiled as SA Rugby president in October 2016.


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