29 Jul 2009

England and Japan to host next rugby World Cups

6:41 am on 29 July 2009

The International Rugby Board has confirmed England will host the 2015 Rugby World Cup and Japan will stage the event in Asia for the first time four years later.

Japan, who lost out to New Zealand in the bidding for the 2011 edition, and England, hosts of the 1991 tournament, were awarded the rights ahead of bids from South Africa and Italy.

The controversy of previous decisions caused by the "horse-trading" of votes was avoided as the 26-man IRB Council passed the recommendations of tournament organisers Rugby World Cup Ltd by 16 votes to 10.

The RWCL Board, who were asked to review all the bids, argued last month that England would maximise the event's commercial possibilities while a first World Cup in Asia would be a huge boost for the development of the game in that region.

England failed in its bid for the 2007 tournament when France won votes from the Home Unions after promising matches to Wales, Scotland and Ireland while Japan were surprising losers last time.