Ireland’s Rugby World Cup Bid Was In Fact On A Par With South Africa
Not worth the paper it was written on.
More and more cracks and faults are appearing every day in World Rugby’s report on the three potential host candidates for the 2023 Rugby World Cup.
South Africa have been officially recommended by the governing body, but it appears there’s more to the report than meet the eyes. The Irish Times has learned that Ireland’s overall financial bid to host showpiece closely matched South Africa’s commercial offer and tournament fee.
These figures are contained in the redacted section of World Rugby’s technical review, the contents of which were made known to the newspaper, writes Gavin Cummiskey.
Irish Rugby have since employed Deloitte to go through the report before submitting a response document highlighting inconsistencies in the review.
“There were surprises in the report,” said Kevin Potts, head of the Irish bid.
“Take Paírc Uí Chaoimh. It has been built and active since August. We sent World Rugby footage of the stadium yet commentary in the report inferred it was not yet built and required significant upgrade.”
The Irish bid also fell down on technological failings, with World Rugby apparently failing to tell Ireland that they would lose marks for not having a technology partner. A major global tech company however, wrote to Rugby World Cup supporting Ireland’s 2023 bid
“But what I was surprised at was the apparent loss of marks for not specifically naming a technology partner. We were not required to do this. The other bidders must have named one.”
The Irish Independent also interestingly pointed out that the report’s safety ranking is hugely questionable. Ireland were awarded the same score on security as France and South Africa, despite the fact France were in a state of emergency until last week and repeated reports of rising crime rates in South Africa
A global index by the Institute for Economics and Peace ranks Ireland as the 10th safest country in the world. France is ranked 51st because of the threat of terrorism in recent years. South Africa is ranked at 123rd out of 163 countries because of major concerns about crime, homicide and access to weapons. Just last week Ernie Els, one of the country’s top golfers, appealed for people outside of South Africa to take notice of a spate of farm attacks there. “People are being murdered every day,” he said. Yet World Rugby still does not see Ireland as a safer pair of hands.