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Friday 23 March, 2018
Media Advisory: Process For Selecting Rugby World Cup 2023 Host Union

Media Advisory: Process For Selecting Rugby World Cup 2023 Host Union

On Wednesday 15 November in London, World Rugby Council decides which candidate will host Rugby World Cup 2023. There are three candidates, namely France, Ireland and South Africa, and none of them will be able to vote during the process.  

That means, in total there are 39 votes left to be won, split up as follows:

  1. The remaining Six Nations unions and SANZAAR unions have three votes each
  2. The six regional associations (Oceania Rugby, Sudamerica Rugby, Rugby Americas North, Rugby Europe, Rugby Africa and Asia Rugby) and the Japan Rugby Football Union have two votes each
  3. The remaining four votes belong to Georgian Rugby Union, Rugby Canada, USA Rugby and Federatia Romȃnă de Rugby. 

On 25 September, each candidate had the opportunity to present to World Rugby Council. This took place at the Royal Garden Hotel in London and was followed by a number of press conferences and other media opportunities.

On 31 October, the RWC 2023 Bid Evaluation Report will be released to host candidates, World Rugby Council and the media. The evaluation has been carried out by a significant team of internal and external functional area experts, against weighted criteria that reflect World Rugby’s key objectives. 

The host candidate which achieves the highest score will be recommended by the Rugby World Cup Board as RWC 2023 host. Independent consultant The Sports Consultancy has scrutinised every aspect of the evaluation to ensure all candidates have been treated fairly and that the agreed criteria have been consistently applied. 

The weighted criteria categories agreed by RWCL Board and Council and communicated to host candidates are based on World Rugby’s objectives:

  1. Venues and infrastructure commensurate with a top-tier major event
  2. Comprehensive and enforceable public and private sector guarantees
  3. A commercially successful event with a fully-funded, robust financial model
  4. Operational excellence through an integrated and experienced delivery team
  5. A vision that engages and inspires domestic and international audiences and contributes to the growth of rugby at all levels
  6. An enabling environment of political and financial stability that respects the diversity of the Rugby World Cup’s global stakeholders
  7. An environment and climate suited to top-level sport in a geography that allows maximum fan mobility

As part of this transparent and independently audited process, World Rugby will announce the recommendation and also make public the full content of the technical review group’s report via media release on the morning of Tuesday 31 October. An additional explanation of the entire process will be available but no further comment on the content of the proposals will be made at that time.

On 15 November, the members of World Rugby Council will cast their votes. The entire process is being overseen by independent auditors. Members of the media, who have not yet applied for accreditation to attend the post-decision media conference, can do so HERE

The decision announcement will take place at the Royal Garden Hotel in London and will be followed by a press conference opportunity. The announcement will be streamed live via and is also available rights-free to broadcasters who wish to take a satellite feed through BT Tower. In addition, there will be rights-free photos from the announcement made available by Getty Images on a pooled basis.

The process so far

Rugby World Cup 2023 host selection follows a complete redesign of the bidding process to promote good governance and transparency, while providing prospective hosts unions and governments with an opportunity to gather all the information necessary to ensure hosting capability prior to moving through the process. This re-modelling has been assisted by The Sports Consultancy, which helped develop the documentation and tools and will support World Rugby throughout the process, including the evaluation and assessment phase. The appointment follows an initial project by The Sports Consultancy last year reviewing decision-making processes and evaluation criteria.

The candidates first entered the education phase during which they took part in the RWC 2015 observer programme and had access to the RWC knowledge centre which houses historic RWC planning data and the RWC delivery guides.

During the second, applicant phase, interested unions were provided with the criteria for evaluation. The criteria were based on World Rugby's seven priority objectives for RWC 2023, which are listed above. The aim of the applicant phase was to ensure interested countries could provide the key tournament deliverables such as adequate financial models, venues that met or would meet RWC standards and government support.


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