South Africans get behind Rugby World Cup 2023 bid
Written by Shana Fife on September 23, 2017
South African Rugby sponsors, sports people, celebrities and ordinary South Africans have rallied behind the Rugby World Cup 2023 bid on the eve of the team’s departure to present the bid to the World Rugby Council in London.
Fittingly, for South Africans, the presentation takes place on Heritage Day, Monday 25 September.
South Africa’s Deputy President, His Excellency Mr Cyril Ramaphosa, will lead the South African delegation, which also includes Mr Thulas Nxesi, the Minister for Sport and Recreation in South Africa, and his deputy, Mr Gert Oosthuizen. The presentation takes place at 12h45 (SA time), following presentations by rivals France and Ireland.
The presentation will focus on South Africa’s key strengths to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup and the country’s ability to produce a high-quality, profitable tournament. Key points include:
A no-strings attached, irrevocable government guarantees of £160m – £40m more than the minimum guarantee
Eight high-quality, rugby-ready venues, capable of hosting a record 2.9m ticket holders, exclusively available to the tournament throughout.
A player centric tournament where no expense is spared to provide the perfect playing conditions made possible by the largest ever budget in relative terms, made possible by South Africa’s lower cost base.
South Africa’s experience and operational excellence in hosting large events, including cricket, soccer and rugby world cups in the past.
South Africa’s attractiveness as an option for players, officials and fans with a favourable exchange rate, climate and tourism experience – from beaches to game parks by way of vineyards and vibrant cities.
And an ideal climate in the South African spring to provide the perfect conditions for a showcase of fast, running rugby.
Mr Mark Alexander, President of SA Rugby, said he was grateful for all the support the bid has received. This includes well wishes from sponsors, sports people, celebrities and other sporting codes as well as the other South Africans who have shared #southafrica2023 on social media.
The bids are assessed according to five criteria with the tournament vision and concept making up 10% of the total; organisation and schedule 5%; venues and host cities count for 30%; tournament infrastructure 20% and finance, commercial and commitments 35%.
“Our bid’s strengths coincide with the criteria that count the most on the weighted scorecard,” said Mr Alexander. “We have outstanding rugby venues, exceptional infrastructure and a strong commercial model underpinned by government guarantees.”
The independent technical assessment will report back to Rugby World Cup (Ltd), which will make its recommendation of a preferred bidder on 31 October. World Rugby Council members will vote to accept or reject that recommendation in London on 15 November.