SA Rugby “desolate” after World Cup vote

SA Rugby president Mark Alexander is “bitterly disappointed” at the decision by the World Rugby Council to overturn a recommendation that South Africa should host the 2023 Rugby World Cup, and instead voted for France to host the tournament in a secret ballot.

“We are bitterly disappointed at this decision and would like to apologise to the people and government of South Africa for raising their hopes,” Alexander said in a press release. “We did everything in our power to bring the tournament to South Africa and we expected to have that right confirmed today.

“We produced a compelling bid document that earned the unanimous recommendation of the Rugby World Cup Ltd board. That recommendation was questioned last week by rivals, but endorsed a second time by World Rugby last week.

“However, the view of the experts and World Rugby’s leadership was overturned by World Rugby Council members, who may have had other factors to take into account. We cannot hide our desolation but, for the sake of rugby we wish the 2023 tournament hosts every success.”

Jurie Roux, CEO of SA Rugby, ruled out any suggestions that his organisation might challenge the vote.

“We have said throughout that we would honour both the letter and the spirit of the process and we now consider the 2023 bidding process closed.

“However, in the feedback sessions I am sure we will be recommending to the World Rugby Council that the verdict of the evaluation committee become binding. World Rugby ran an exhaustive and transparent process for 15 months to identify the best host nation, only for the process to go entirely opaque for the past two weeks.”

Mr Alexander said that after a fourth successive disappointment in the Rugby World Cup bidding process it was difficult to know where South Africa would go from here.

“It will be for the next generation of SA Rugby leaders to decide whether to compete for the 2027 tournament or beyond,” he said. “I am sure our country will fulfil the dream of hosting the tournament once again someday; our hearts bleed that it will not be in 2023.”

- All Out Rugby Staff Writer

Let's chat

  • Sharky

    As a nation I reckon we just give up on rugby and focus on tiddlywinks…

  • Peter

    Sharky….6 years ago i gave my Bok jersey away…..4 years ago i stopped watching Bok games….2 years ago i started co-supporting the AB’s………now i think its time to go purely 7’s ….at least they have a coach…a plan and they win shit!!!!

    • Sharky

      Yeah, I’ve been living n the UK for nearly 10 years now. Maybe I should become a England supporter like some of my mates. This Bok rollercoaster is not good for my blood pressure.

  • Fanie

    The pigeons have come to roost.At present we are bankrupt not only in monetary terms but also morally as sport in this country is run by the government. Will SA be able to host the rugby in 2023 .Why is there no clear plan at grassroots level for sport in this country and why must i watch rugby with under performing players and a coach .We have players playing for the Boks that should not even be considered. We have to ask ourselves is the government serious in the selection process how much money would be plowed back into the sport and how much corruption will there be in the running of such a event.

  • Wesley

    No matter where its hosted or what is played, the skulduggery will continue, and we are naive of only looking at ourselves as the “bad country”… Not that ours is great, they are all thieving bastards, but everyone in this great sports of ours is. World Rugby, just like FIFA and Olympics and all other world sporting associations / events have become moneymaking corruption events of massive proportions. If it happened in our own country, we would cry “TYPICAL CORRUPT GOVT!!”, but if someone with a backhand is found in other countries, they would call it “the cost of doing business”. Corruption takes place no matter where you are, people are terrible lying thieving things, and so it will continue…

  • Godfrey

    Not sure why Mr Alexander is apologizing to the government! The lack of confidence in the SA Rand and its poor rate of exchange had lots to do with the decision to base WRC2023 in a Euro based country and if we had a more morally correct government and president there would be greater business confidence and we might not be Europe’s poor relatives. The high murder rate, unsolved crimes and inept justice system is also the fault of the government as are the visa requirements for foreigners wanting to visit our country, the poor public transport system, interference in the selection of sports teams, poor safety and security and the list goes on. No Mr Alexander, very polite of you but I suggest they should be apologizing to us for a Mugabe-like mismanagement of our our once great country.

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