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SA lose out on Rugby World Cup, France named hosts

16 November 2017

South Africa, which staged the 1995 World Cup and won it in their first appearance after missing the first two because of the apartheid sporting ban, had been odds-on favourite after coming out clearly on top in the evaluation report.

France have upset the odds having been ranked second in last month's evaluation report, with South Africa having been recommended by World Rugby after boasting the highest score.

South Africa vice-president Cyril Ramaphosa, one of the architects of the relatively peaceful transition from apartheid, said a 2023 World Cup in the country would serve as affirmation of much of what the late Mandela stood for.

France has been officially awarded the right to host Rugby World Cup 2023 ahead of Ireland and France in London on Wednesday.

"We should never forget that the technical report found that Ireland would be excellent hosts for Rugby World Cup 2023, and there may be other occasions for Ireland to show the world what we are capable of".

World Rugby chairman Bill Beaumont described the selection process as the "most transparent and comprehensive" in the organisation's history. They hosted the soccer World Cup in 1998 and the European Championships in 2000 and 2016.

World Rugby had hit back at the criticisms of their process, labelling it inaccurate.

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But the former France coach was all smiles after securing the 10th edition of the tournament which began in 1987 when the sport was still amateur.

Argentina, Australia, England, Italy, New Zealand, Scotland and Wales had three votes apiece.

The IRFU and the team behind our bid, however, have said that it is still possible for us to win. "When the Fifa World Cup was held there in 2010, we had a more than 20 percent uptake in players".

Mark Alexander, President of SA Rugby, stated the South Africa had accepted the result despite the disappointment.

"For nearly six years we have focused passionately on bringing a Rugby World Cup to Ireland in 2023".

"That recommendation was questioned last week by rivals, but endorsed a second time by World Rugby last week". We wish them every success as they turn their attention to delivering an outstanding tournament.

SA lose out on Rugby World Cup, France named hosts