WORLD CUP 2023: Public spat escalates

Sat, 04 Nov 2017 15:57

REACTION: World Rugby chiefs hit back after French federation boss Bernard Laporte criticised the technical report for the 2023 World Cup amid an escalating war of words between the bidders.

The Rugby World Cup Board unanimously recommended earlier this week that the World Rugby Council award the tournament to South Africa when they vote later this month.

Laporte told AFP that he wants the report recommending South Africa to be modified, believing that France's credentials have been underrated.

He questioned how South Africa was deemed to outperform France on issues such as quality of hotels, stadiums and doping.   

Ireland reacted furiously to South Africa Rugby CEO Jurie Roux suggesting the race was over and that they and the French should take the "moral high ground" so nothing untoward happens between now and the vote.

But World Rugby, the game's governing body, hit back in a statement on Saturday.

"World Rugby is concerned by the reported comments by host candidates regarding the Rugby World Cup 2023 host selection process and recommendation, and in particular those attributed to the Federation Francaise de Rugby," they said.

"While disappointment and high emotion following the announcement of a recommendation is understandable, such comments are both unfounded and inaccurate."

The governing body, whose chairman is former England captain Bill Beaumont, said their selection process had been transparent and third party experts were also involved in the technical evaluation.

"The process has been supported by the host candidates, the Rugby World Cup Board and Council throughout," the statement added.

"We will be raising our concerns on this matter with the Federation Francaise de Rugby and look forward to the World Rugby Council appointing the Rugby World Cup 2023 host on 15 November with a clear, comprehensive and objective recommendation to consider."

Agence France-Presse

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 24 November 2017
Cheetahs v Edinburgh 17h30 Bloemfontein
Ulster v Treviso 19h05 Kingspan Stadium
Cardiff Blues v Connacht 19h35 Cardiff Arms Park
Leinster v Dragons 19h35 RDS Stadium
Newcastle Falcons v Gloucester 19h45 Kingston Park
Sat, 25 November 2017
Leicester Tigers v Worcester Warriors 12h45 Welford Road
Bath v Harlequins 12h45 Recreation Ground
Italy v South Africa 13h00 Rome
Scotland v Australia 14h30 Edinburgh
England v Samoa 15h00 Twickenham
Wales v New Zealand 17h15 Cardiff
Sale Sharks v Northampton Saints 17h30 AJ Bell Stadium
Ireland v Argentina 17h30 Aviva Stadium
France v Japan 19h00 Paris
Sun, 26 November 2017
Ospreys v Glasgow Warriors 13h00 Liberty Stadium
Kings v Scarlets 13h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Zebre v Munster 13h30 Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi
Saracens v Exeter Chiefs 15h00 Allianz Park
London Irish v Wasps 15h00 Madejski Stadium
WORLD CUP
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Pool A
Team P W D L Pts
Australia 4 4 0 0 17
Wales 4 3 0 1 13
England 4 2 0 2 11
Fiji 4 1 0 3 5
Uruguay 4 0 0 4 0
Pool B
Team P W D L Pts
South Africa 4 3 0 1 16
Scotland 4 3 0 1 14
Japan 4 3 0 1 12
Samoa 4 1 0 3 6
United States 4 0 0 4 0
Pool C
Team P W D L Pts
New Zealand 4 4 0 0 19
Argentina 4 3 0 1 15
Georgia 4 2 0 2 8
Tonga 4 1 0 3 6
Namibia 4 0 0 4 1
Pool D
Team P W D L Pts
Ireland 4 4 0 0 18
France 4 3 0 1 14
Italy 4 2 0 2 10
Romania 4 1 0 3 4
Canada 4 0 0 4 2