Australia may host Rugby World Cup 2027
May 16, 2013
Rugby World Cup may be heading back to Australia sooner than had been expected © IRB
Australia is in line to host Rugby World Cup 2027, 12 years before the country reasonably expected to next stage the tournament, with reports the International Rugby Board (IRB) is set to scrap the tradition of rotating the finals between the northern and southern hemispheres.
Rugby Gold reported on Thursday that the inclusion of Japan as the 2019 host nation, and potential new hosts such as Argentina, was set to see the tradition of rotation abandoned.
But heavy financial losses sustained by New Zealand in 2011 may see the IRB restrict subsequent hosting rights to nations capable of guaranteeing a profit because the organisation secures the majority of its revenue from the tournament. And such a decision could reduce the list of host nations to Australia, England, France and South Africa.
South Africa last hosted the tournament in 1995 and Rugby Gold reported it would be the likely front-runner to stage Rugby World Cup 2023. Australia, the Rugby World Cup 2003 host, could potentially stage the 2027 tournament as it would be considered "next in line" because France staged the 2007 finals and England will host the 2015 edition, Rugby Gold reported
Such a development will hearten Australian Rugby Union powerbrokers, as the union made $A35 million from the 2003 tournament but recently announced an $A8.4 million loss for 2012.
ARU chief executive Bill Pulver recently told ESPNscrum exclusively that the union might have to reduce player salaries due to disappointing financial forecasts because he expected the windfall from the 2013 British & Irish Lions tour to be smaller than had been anticipated due to restricted sponsorship. He also said that Australia was unlikely to secure the Rugby World Cup until 2039 because of the rotation between the hemispheres.
© ESPN Australia / New Zealand
"It has been the World Cup that smashed down the gender barriers of the sport." Tom Hamilton looks back at a remarkable tournament
A selection of the best pictures from England's historic World Cup triumph in Paris as they beat Canada 21-9
The latest Week in Pictures takes in the Women's World Cup, the opening round of the Top 14 and the Rugby Championship
When the Great War broke out, rugby in Australia and New Zealand initially soldiered on. Rewind looks back