The Candidature File is a massively detailed document in which the Irish bid team chronicles Ireland’s outstanding attributes as a host for the Rugby World Cup in 2023, including all the key Government commitments required by World Rugby.

The 990-page document sets out the plans that will deliver unprecedented commercial success and help unlock and engage new audiences for Rugby, including through the infrastructure of the worldwide Irish Diaspora.

The Candidature File, was submitted to World Rugby headquarters by a delegation led by ‘BID KID’ Alex Place, from Co. Antrim.

The 11-year-old was one of 120 children carrying flags to represent every Rugby playing nation of the world, and joined with Dick Spring, Chairman of Ireland’s RWC 2023 Bid Oversight Board, Stephen Hilditch, President, Irish Rugby Football Union, Shane Ross TD, Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Brian O’Driscoll, Bid Ambassador, Joe Schmidt Ireland Head Coach as well as members of all the Irish international Rugby Teams to hand-deliver the landmark document.

Alex Place, in formally submitting the document, said: “It is a great honour to present this bid document to World Rugby on behalf of all the people of Ireland.”

Dick Spring, Chairman, RWC 2023 Bid Oversight Board, stated:

“This bid represents the hopes and aspirations of the entire Island and is focussed very firmly on the future, as symbolised by the children who were front and centre of the bid submission today.

“It presents World Rugby with a compelling proposition that combines all the advantages of a traditional Rugby market with the many opportunities of a new one.

“Rugby is hugely popular in Ireland and growing, from this platform Irish sports fans will light up the tournament in the manner they have lit up so many international events around the world over the years, making it memorable for all.

“This bid is grounded in certainty through:

  •  unparalleled Government support
  •  the availability and suitability of sold out, iconic stadiums set in the heart of cities and towns,
  • and, of course Ireland’s unrivalled access, through our diaspora, to the North American market.

“When one adds to that our massive tourism infrastructure one is guaranteed  a tournament like no other for world rugby, visitors and home supporters alike.

“As I have mentioned, a key part of our vision is to support the growth of Rugby worldwide – by using the Rugby World Cup in Ireland to connect with the wonderful support of the Irish diaspora worldwide, particularly some 40 million in North America alone. Through the Diaspora and Ireland’s existing, proven platforms with them, this tournament will set new records for travelling fans and connect with new audiences for the game internationally.

“Ireland’s commitment is further underlined by the fact that Rugby World Cup 2023, from the turn of the decade, will be our sole focus in terms of a major international sporting event, ensuring no distractions for key host authorities and no competition for the attention of Irish Sports fans and sponsors.

“Ireland is truly ready for the world – ready to host the world and ready to promote rugby throughout the world.”

Key dates

1st June 2017
Formal submission of Bids to World Rugby

25th September 2017                       
Formal presentations to World Rugby by all Bid Teams – London

15th November 2017                           
Vote by World Rugby International Representatives, followed by announcement of successful candidate – London

Long list of stadiums for consideration

  • Casement Park, Belfast (34,186)
  • Kingspan Stadium, Belfast (18,168)
  • McHale Park, Castlebar (38,000)
  • Páirc Ui Chaoimh, Cork (45,770)
  • Celtic Park, Derry/Londonderry (17,000)
  • Croke Park, Dublin (82,300)
  • Aviva Stadium, Dublin (51,711)
  • RDS Arena, Dublin (18,677)
  • Pearse Stadium, Galway (34,000)
  • FitzGerald Stadium, Killarney (38,200)
  • Nowlan Park, Kilkenny (26,000)
  • Thomond Park, Limerick (26,897)