England unsure of rugby bid due to £80 mio. guarantee
04.05.2009By Steve Menary
£80 milion guarentee is threatening rugby union world cups bid process
The deadline for bids for the 2015 and 2019 rugby union world cups is only days away but the International Rugby Board (IRB) demand that hosts provide an £80 million guarantee is threatening to turn the bid process into a shambles.
Formal bids are due in from interested unions on May 8 and following the recent withdrawals of Australia and Scotland for the 2015 event, England remain uncertain of bidding.
"It puts an absolutely massive financial risk on the bidding union," RFU chief executive Francis Baron told the BBC.
“Our predictions make it unlikely England could actually make a profit out of hosting a World Cup in 2015. At the moment we just can't make the numbers work because of the scale of the financial guarantee required.”
His counterpart at the Australian Rugby Union, John O’Neil voiced similar concerns after withdrawing the ARU’s bid for the 2015 competition and no firm decision has been taken on a bid for the 2019 rugby world cup.
The IRB asked interested unions to confirm their intention to tender for the competition by September 30 2008.
Last October, the rugby unions of Australia, England, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Scotland, South Africa and Wales were all confirmed as bidders for the 2015 rugby world cup 2015.
Since then, as the global economic crisis has worsened, proposals for Ireland, Wales and Scotland to bid together then for the Scots to bid with the English have all fallen by the wayside.
Last year, Australia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Russia, Scotland, South Africa and Wales also formally confirmed their commitment to host the 2019 tournament.
Of the bidders still left, Italy, South Africa and Japan all have government support and are expected to bid for one or both of the events.