The US are set to be named asthe host of the 2031 men’s Rugby World Cup and the women’s event in 2033.
“We’re not talking to anybody else about Rugby World Cup hosting in 2031 and 2033,” World Rugby Chief Alan Gilpin said.
“It doesn’t mean it’s a done deal … but it means that we strategically believe we can deliver the right outcomes with this hosting plan.”
Meanwhile, Australia are the only candidate to host the 2027 showpiece after Argentina and South Africa backed out while Russia’s bid has been disqualified. Asked about reports of problems, Gilpin said: “The short answer is there’ll be more news to come in the next couple of weeks.
“We’re down in Australia from the end of next week, addressing the outstanding issues with with our friends at Rugby Australia. So there’ll be more to come on that. In terms of contingencies, yes, lots of conversations going on around who’s capable of hosting and when and again, those are very strategic conversations rather than a competitive bid process.
“So [Australia] are our preferred candidate for 2027 and we expect to be in good shape in the discussions with them.”
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Nigel Owens wants FIVE law changes to encourage ‘expansive rugby’
#1. Scrap the goal-line dropout
Owens wrote: “As for goal-line dropouts, I was a big fan initially because I felt it would prevent attacking teams from numerous pick-and-gos near the try line, with teams instead attempting to move the ball wide to avoid being held up and losing possession. But I’m not sure it has worked as planned. We still see plenty of pick-and-gos until teams get over, we still see plenty of mauls and the number of collisions hasn’t decreased.
“We are also seeing fewer scrums near the goal line, and to be honest I’m not sure that is a good thing. The scrum needs to be an important part of the game, and right now we are not seeing the benefits of it. Rugby must continue to be a game for all shapes and sizes, and at all levels, too.
Attacking teams are also kicking longer knowing that if the ball rolls dead, the defending team has to do a goal-line dropout and they can get the ball back. We’ve also lost the short dropouts we used to see from the 22-metre line where teams would compete to win the ball back, or a quick dropout would be taken, because teams now backed up on their goal line just kick the ball long to escape and what happens? The opposition kick it back.
“From initially believing it would work, I would now like the goal-line dropout law to go to be honest. If anything it is having a negative effect.”