Monday 5 December 2016

'Benefits of hosting 2023 World Cup would be enormous'

Published 13/05/2015 | 02:30

9 May - Keith Earls, Munster, in action against Iain Henderson, Ulster. Guinness PRO12, Round 21, Ulster v Munster. Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park, Belfast (Ramsey Cardy / SPORTSFILE)
9 May - Keith Earls, Munster, in action against Iain Henderson, Ulster. Guinness PRO12, Round 21, Ulster v Munster. Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park, Belfast (Ramsey Cardy / SPORTSFILE)

One of the world's leading sports officials has backed Ireland's bid to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup.

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CEO of the Commonwealth Games Federation, David Grevemberg, believes that Ireland has a "fantastic offering" and that it would be an "ideal" host country.

The tournament is estimated to be worth €800 million to the economy with in excess of 350,000 supporters expected to travel and Grevemberg is adamant that it would be a major success if the IRFU's bid is successful.

"The advantage Ireland has is that it very much has a real sense of self-identity, which is central in Irish culture," he said.

"This is something that decision-makers want to hear and understand. All round, Ireland really has a fantastic offering.

Benefits

"From an Irish perspective, the benefits could be enormous. There would, of course, be an unrivalled sport tourism injection but the event has the potential to have a longer, regenerative effect if positioned appropriately.

"If it is successful in its bid to host the Rugby World Cup, I'm confident that it will put on an event that few could rival."

Grevemberg was speaking ahead of the Shannon Airport European Sport Tourism Summit, which takes place in Thomond Park tomorrow and Friday.

Meanwhile, Ulster head coach Neil Doak will find out Iain Henderson's fate today when he faces a Pro12 disciplinary committee.

The 23-year-old was shown a red card by referee Nigel Owens for leading with his head when entering a ruck against Munster on Saturday.

Irish Independent

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