26 Sep 2017

Bids in for rugby's 2023 World Cup

7:57 am on 26 September 2017

Ireland, France and South Africa have all promised millions, great stadiums and "the best tournament ever" as they seek to earn the right to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

The All Blacks celebrate after winning the 2015 Rugby World Cup.

The All Blacks celebrate after winning the 2015 Rugby World Cup. Photo: AFP

All three countries are presenting their bids to World Rugby to host the 2023 tournament.

The Irish, who have never been the main host, are the bookmaker's favourite, ahead of South Africa, which hosted the 1995 tournament, with 2007 hosts France the outsider.

The World Cup board will declare its recommended candidate on October 31 with the host nation formally announced on November 15.

The 2015 World Cup in England set records in terms of ticket sales, TV viewing figures and income but Japan, hosts of the first Asian World Cup in 2019, will make much less money.

Consequently, cash was a big feature of all three 2023 bids, with each making a big issue of their governmental financial securities and guaranteed profits, as well as great existing stadiums and minimal travel - meaning points of difference needed to be found elsewhere.

The French bid included the innovative idea that teams knocked out in the pool stage would be invited to stay through the tournament as guests and they will, also for the first time, include a closing ceremony.

Slightly bizarrely, the bid party included the sons of the late All Black rugby superstar Jonah Lomu. Seven-year-old Dhyreille and Brayley, 8, were presented to declare how much they loved French rugby, with Dhyreille having been born in Marseille, where Lomu played three matches at the end of his career in 2009-10.