RFU keen to host 2025 women’s rugby show


RFU announces bid for 2025 of women’s tournament Image: Visit London

England’s (UK) Rugby Football Union (RFU) has confirmed it wants to submit a bid to host the women’s Rugby World Cup in 2025 after providing an expression of interest to World Rugby.

The ‘Women’s Six Nations’ stated that the tournament was last staged in England in 2010 and for the 2025 bid, the RFU plans to adopt a multiCity and multiregion approach to delivering the tournament.

The Rugby Football Union (RFU) is the governing body for rugby union in England. It was founded in 1871, and was the sport’s international governing body prior to the formation of what is now known as World Rugby (WR) in 1886.

Dublin (Ireland)-headquartered World Rugby is the world governing body for the sport of rugby union. World Rugby organizes the Rugby World Cup every four years, the sport’s most recognized and most profitable competition.

The ‘Women’s Six Nations’ further stated that a central theme to the bid will be to deliver a legacy program in parallel to the tournament from 2022 to 2025 for growing the women’s game across the country.

As part of this legacy program, the RFU would look to support the development of women’s rugby in Scotland, Wales and Ireland so all four nations could qualify for the 2029 World Cup.

England is currently ranked No.1 in the world, having won the last three Women’s Six Nations titles (an annual women’s rugby union competition between England, France, Ireland, Italy, Scotland, and Wales), and last clinched the Rugby World Cup in 2014.

Remarked RFU Chief Executive Bill Sweeney, “Securing RWC 2025 would add to the impressive list of major sporting events that the UK has attracted since London 2012, reinforcing the UK’s international reputation as a leading major events’ destination and a global leader in promoting women’s sport. As well as providing great economic returns, hosting the tournament would help to further promote rugby as an inclusive sport and provide a springboard to narrow the gap between male and female participation.”

The RFU say that since the Red Roses (England women’s national rugby union team) won the world title in 2014, female participation in England has grown from 13,000 to 40,000 registered players in clubs, with a growing pipeline of 80,000 girls playing in schools, colleges and universities.

The organization added that the legacy program will see facilities standards improved to enhance the experiences women and girls have in hundreds of clubs.

Through investment, the program will modernize toilet facilities, upgrade changing rooms and develop social spaces in clubs across the country.

Grassroots education and mentor programs will also aim to attract 500 new female coaches and 1,000 match officials and 60,000 new registered players.

With the aim of attracting more fans of women’s rugby in the build-up to 2025, renewed effort will be put on marketing and encouraging fan attendance at Allianz Premier 15s matches.

The Premier 15s was founded by the RFU in October 2016 as Women’s Super Rugby, where teams involved would have to invest in training facilities and meet increased minimum standards. The RFU will invest millions of pounds in the clubs over the first three seasons to help develop the improved standards. A minimum requirement in the new league included developing a professional coaching resource to support players in training throughout the week. There will be no promotion/relegation to the Premier 15s during the first two seasons.

Said Sue Day, RFU Chief Operations and Finance Officer and former England Women’s Captain who represented England at three Rugby World Cups and won three Grand Slams, “Securing a bid to host the Women’s RWC would be incredible. We want to leave a lasting legacy for women’s rugby in England, the UK and across the world, both in terms of attracting more people to play and attracting new fans. As we have seen from other home World Cups in cricket, hockey and netball, a RWC would further advance all women’s sport and nothing would beat watching the Red Roses compete in front of a full capacity crowd at the 82,000-capacity Twickenham Stadium in England.”

Subject to securing sufficient private and public sector funding, the final bid submission will go to World Rugby for consideration in January 2022.

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