Japan reveals plan for 2019 Rugby World Cup venues

Japan Sport Council and James Mortimer     25 Dec 2012     Japan Sport Council

With planning and preparation advancing strongly, the foundations for the successful delivery of Rugby's premier international competition are being implemented now to maximise the opportunity for the organisers, to deliver a tournament that will boost Rugby in Japan and Asia.

Details of the key process were announced following a highly-productive meeting of the JR 2019 Board where delegates heard that preparation was on track with seven years to go until Japan welcomes the world for what will be the largest-ever single sport event hosted in the country.

The process has been delivered after detailed consultation and collaboration with tournament owners Rugby World Cup Limited (RWCL) to understand the learnings from previous Rugby World Cups and comprehensive meetings with the England Rugby 2015 (ER 2015) organising body to ensure the best-possible process for venue selection.

With excitement building in Japan and Venues expressing strong interest in hosting matches, Fujio Mitarai, JR 2019 President announced the following: "That the JR 2019 Board has confirmed the selection of venues to be announced in May 2015 following a rigorous process in order that the local hosting authorities may observe at close quarters Rugby World Cup 2015 to ensure the delivery of an exceptional experience for the teams and domestic and international fans."

The Match Venue Selection Policy is as follows:

Prepare stadia and facilities where a vibrant 'Rugby and Football culture’ can develop
Popularise, develop and invigorate the sporting culture of hosting regions.
Provide dreams, happiness and great memories to all people
Contribution to regional development
Consideration for regional balancing as a broader national project.
Spread of excitement of hosting Rugby World Cup so that benefits can be felt throughout Japan.

RWCL Chairman Bernard Lapasset said: "Rugby World Cup is firmly established as one of the world's premier and largest sporting events and detailed preparation is key to ensuring that the benefits are optimised for the host nation and global Rugby."

"Japan 2019 will be a major milestone - the first Rugby World Cup to be hosted in Asia and we are working in partnership with JR 2019, the Japan Rugby Football Union, JSC and local and regional authorities to bring to life a shared vision that ensures that the hosting of the tournament delivers multiple strong positive impacts in order that Rugby growth is boosted throughout Asia."

"This process is another significant step along the way to achieving that goal and I am delighted that there is such strong interest and appetite from venue and cities wanting to host matches at Rugby World Cup 2019, underscoring the strength of the Rugby World Cup brand."

With Rugby World Cup 2011 in New Zealand having surpassed all forecasted economic and sporting expectations delivering NZD 1.73 million economic impact, a six-week global tourism platform and reinforcing the nation as an exceptional major event host destination, local governments the length and breadth of Japan are keen to be involved in Japan 2019.

"We have been across the country talking to local governments and venue owners who expressed their interest in hosting Rugby World Cup games." said Mr. Mitarai.

"The success of hosting a Rugby World Cup cannot be accomplished by the Japan Rugby Football Union alone, but working together as a nation and going toward the same goal utilising experts in various areas as one 'Team' will be the best way to make it possible," Former Prime Minister, Vice President of JR 2019 and President of JRFU, Mr. Mori told the press conference.

Mr. Mitarai also announced that nation-wide research will take place from January 2013 to receive “voices” (feedback) among the Rugby Family in Japan, so that the Tournament Vision could be created.

Japan is ready to welcome the world with open arms, showcasing tradition and innovation, heritage and culture.