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Thursday 8 December 2016

Here are the 12 stadia included in Ireland's 2023 Rugby World Cup bid

Ger Keville and Ryan Nugent

Published 15/11/2016 | 12:17

An Taoiseach Enda Kenny leads the way watched by Northern Ireland's First Minister Martin McGuinness, Brian O'Driscoll and Dick Spring at the launch of Ireland's bid for 2023 Rugby World Cup in the Aviva Stadium.
Photo: Tony Gavin 15/11/2016
An Taoiseach Enda Kenny leads the way watched by Northern Ireland's First Minister Martin McGuinness, Brian O'Driscoll and Dick Spring at the launch of Ireland's bid for 2023 Rugby World Cup in the Aviva Stadium. Photo: Tony Gavin 15/11/2016
Lansdowne Road
A general view of the Aviva Stadium before the FAI Cup Final match between Cork City and Dundalk at Aviva Stadium

Ireland's Oversight Board for the 2023 Rugby World Cup bid have confirmed the 12 stadia in their proposal to host the tournament.

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GAA grounds will make up the backbone with eight venues listed alongside the Aviva Stadium (Dublin), Thomond Park (Limerick), Ravenhill (Belfast) and the RDS (Dublin).

Croke Park (Dublin), Pairc Ui Chaoimh (Cork), Casement Park (Belfast), Fitzgerald Stadium (Kerry), Pearse Stadium (Galway), McHale Park (Mayo), Nowlan Park (Kilkenny) and Celtic Park (Derry) are all part of the Board's proposal.

Sports Minister Shane Ross said: "If we win this bid, we'll be prepared for it. We're absolutely determined," he said.

"Hosting the Rugby World Cup here would be a unique opportunity to showcase Ireland, not just to the hundreds of thousands of visitors who come for the tournament, but to a worldwide television audience," he added.

Bid Chairman Dick Spring said he is confident of a successful bid.

"We believe Ireland is ready to stage a World Cup like no other. A tournament that will capture the imagination of the world," he said.

Irish movie actor Liam Neeson has narrated a video entitled "Ready For The World" that the 2023 World Cup bid team unveiled today at the Aviva Stadium.

"Taken" star Neeson has voiced the video free of charge, lending his celebrity weight to Ireland's increasingly high-profile bid to stage rugby's global contest in seven years' time.

An Irish Rugby Football Union (IRFU) spokesman confirmed that actor Neeson had waived any potential fee for the promotional video, in a clear early boost to Ireland's bid.

Ireland revealed detailed logistics and plans for their £100million bid a press conference today (Tuesday), outlining the 12 potential venues and anticipated tourism and financial benefits of hosting the competition.

Ireland are battling it out with South Africa and France for the chance to stage the World Cup in seven years' time.

The IRFU has joined forces with the two Irish governments to build a bid that will run to at least £100million.

Global governing body World Rugby will decide the 2023 competition's destination in November 2017 - and Ireland are comfortably the first of the three competing nations to map out their detailed hosting plans.

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