Events and Attractions

U.S. expected to be awarded '31 men's, '33 women's Rugby World Cups

Awarding the tournament to the U.S. is the culmination of an unlikely quest by the country’s rugby enthusiastsGetty Images

The World Rugby Council today is "expected to award" the '31 men’s Rugby World Cup and the '33 women’s World Cup to the U.S., according to John Stensholt of the WALL STREET JOURNAL. The move is a "gamble that a premier global sporting event can stage its biggest event in a place where its audience and participation are modest" -- and the national federation, Rugby USA, was "in bankruptcy proceedings" as recently as '20. Rugby USA projects "3.1 million tickets could be sold for a 48-match men’s World Cup." Two dozen cities have "pledged to host matches" in either or both '31 and '33. President Biden "wrote a letter of support to World Rugby in early April." USA Rugby officials forecast the events will cost $500-600M to host, and World Rugby CEO Alan Gilpin said that the global governing body will "seek private capital sources to help fund the sport’s growth in the U.S. during the next decade and hopefully beyond." The awarding of the tournament to the U.S. is the "culmination of an unlikely quest by the country’s rugby enthusiasts," such as Major League Rugby San Diego Legion part-Owner Darren Gardner, real estate financier Ryan Patterson, and MLR L.A. Giltinis and Austin Gilgronis Owner Adam Gilchrirst, who put "time, effort and their own money into securing" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 5/11).

GETTING TO WORK: USA Rugby CEO Ross Young said that the U.S. being awarded the hosting rights is the point “where the real work starts.” SPORTS BUSINESS JOURNAL's Thomas Leary noted that will "center on a concurrent development and legacy program" in partnership with World Rugby to "elevate the game across youth, high school and YMCA programming in the lead-up to the World Cup events." Young: “All of that needs a bit of money and impetus. That whole pillar is hugely important, and we can’t just sit around and wait. If we’re going to maximize this opportunity, we need to start that now.” Leary noted the U.S. bids include 24 cities that have "pledged official support for either or both World Cups," with the understanding the events "would use NFL, college and MLS stadiums in those markets" (SPORTS BUSINESS JOURNAL, 5/9 issue).

LOOKING TO GROW: The AP's Steve Douglas writes by using a new partnership hosting model, World Rugby wants to "give the same country back-to-back World Cups," believing it will "underpin the growth of the sport." The American market is regarded by World Rugby as an "area of untapped potential, in both a commercial and sporting sense." The '15 men’s World Cup in Japan was the "first to be held in Asia," and taking the sport’s "showpiece to the United States would be another step toward establishing a new market for rugby." In some parts of the world, the men’s tournament -- held every four years -- ranks "No. 3 in global sports events behind the Olympics and the soccer World Cup." Australia is "heavily favored" to be awarded the men’s Rugby World Cup in '27 and the women’s tournament in '29, having received "preferred candidate" status by World Rugby in November (AP, 5/11).

SBJ Morning Buzzcast: August 12, 2022

FIFA shifts opener of World Cup; MLB shows well in Iowa; Broncos tab a new president and Boehly retains sports venue design pioneer.  

SBJ Unpacks: MLS All Star Week

Ahead of the MLS All-Star Game, Alex Silverman was joined by CBS Sports' Grant Wahl and World Soccer Talk's Christopher Harris to discuss the current state of MLS. Among the topics discussed: MLS All-Star MLS Expansion MLS-Apple Deal Future of MLS

SBJ I Factor: Jed York

SBJ I Factor: Jed York, presented by Allied Sports SBJ I Factor presented by Allied Sports features an interview with San Francisco 49ers CEO Jed York. York is in his 17th year with the organization and his 12th as CEO. He is a two-time SBJ Forty Under 40 honoree as a member of the classes of 2012 and 2013. York talks with SBJ’s Abe Madkour about what he learned from growing up in the sports business, working in multiple departments at the team, the challenges of building Levi’s Stadium, and how his leadership style has evolved through the years. SBJ I Factor is a monthly podcast offering interviews with sports executives who have been recipients of one of the magazine’s awards, such as Forty Under 40, Game Changers and others.

Shareable URL copied to clipboard!

Sorry, something went wrong with the copy but here is the link for you.