Venues clamour to be team bases in 2015
July 17, 2013
The battle for the 2015 Rugby World Cup will start and end at Twickenham © Getty Images
World Cup organiser England Rugby 2015 (ER2015) has reported a high level of interest from venues hoping to play host to a team during the sport's showpiece event.
Team Base Applications
Over eighty applications from a wide range of rugby clubs, schools, colleges, universities, local authorities and established training complexes have been received since the search was launched in April this year. ER2015 is now set to identify 50 'Team Bases' - that must include an outdoor and indoor training facility, hotel, swimming pool and gym - to offer the 20 sides that are set to descend on the UK in a little over two year's time.
World Cup chiefs have been criticised for their choice of match venues for the tournament - that will see just six out of 48 matches staged in the north of the country - but they hope to ease those concerns by using team bases to take the "Rugby World Cup to all corners of the country and make this a truly regional event". Team Base locations will be announced next year following consultation with all qualified competing teams.
ER2015 chief executive Debbie Jevans, commented: "Team Bases will play a pivotal role in the Tournament and we are delighted to see such a strong response rate to the search and selection programme. We want to identify high quality facilities across the country to ensure the teams have the best possible platform to compete at Rugby World Cup 2015. As an organising committee we are fully committed to meeting the needs of all competing players, ensuring that we deliver to the best possible standards.
"We can already see the fantastic regional engagement opportunities Team Bases will provide - we want to take the teams, the Tournament and the Game of Rugby as far and wide as possible in 2015 so we are really encouraged by the response."
Rugby World Cup Limited chairman Bernard Lapasset said: "The strong interest from parties interested in becoming a Rugby World Cup 2015 Team Base reflects the enormous prestige of the Rugby World Cup brand and an event that is set to capture the hearts and minds of people the length and breadth of the nation and beyond."
"While the match venues are the stages on which the 20 participating nations will showcase the sport and character-building values, the Team Bases will deliver the important platform to ensure all our players are ready to perform to their full potential. I am delighted that this submission reflects the superb sporting facilities in England and Wales, but also the depth and warmth of the welcome that the teams will receive."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
"If England flounder in the next World Cup the knives will be out - six-year contract or not." Tom Hamilton on the new contract for the England coaches
With the deadline for World Cup ticket applications now over, Tom May outlines his hopes, gripes and wishes for next year's global gathering
Floundering Leicester, exquisite Exeter and two old England players tearing up trees - it's the Monday Maul
The latest Week in Pictures takes in the Rugby Championship and all the domestic action from the northern hemisphere