Rugby Australia, the country’s governing body for rugby union, has welcomed the confirmation of additional funding and support in its bid to host the men’s edition of the Rugby World Cup (RWC) premier national teams tournament in 2027 and for an additional bid to host the women’s edition in 2029.

The Australian government has already provided AUD9.8 million ($7.3 million) in funding to support the country’s bid for the 2027 RWC, for which it was named the preferred candidate last year.

Speaking to media last week, Alan Gilpin, chief executive of the World Rugby governing body, appeared to firm up that position, despite some apparent problems with the bid.

Subsequently, it has been confirmed that support for the bid from the Commonwealth political association will be extended to also include a bid for the 2029 tournament.

That will include support for event delivery and operations should bidding be successful, as well as support for “legacy initiatives across Rugby Australia’s domestic programs and an investment into Pacific-focused programs”.

In addition, the Australian government has also committed in-kind operational services and support for event delivery.

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Hamish McLennan, chairman of Rugby Australia, said: “The Australian government’s support is a huge boost for our bid as we continue to work with World Rugby on developing the tournament model for Rugby World Cup 2027 and contemplate the potential opportunity to bid for Rugby World Cup 2029 …

“The breadth of the support outlined in the budget today, from investment into tournament delivery, operational support, and, crucially, legacy programs for Australia and the Pacific region, now enables us to illustrate to the World Rugby Council we are ready to bring the tournament back down under.”

“Bringing the world’s third-largest sporting event back to our shores would provide a huge boost to the Australian economy after what has been an incredibly difficult few years for everyone.

“RWC 2027 in Australia would welcome two million attendees, including 200,000 international visitors, delivering AUD2.5 billion in direct and indirect expenditure for the economy and creating 13,300 equivalent FTE jobs. It would also attract 30,000 new participants to the game. This is an unrivaled opportunity to support the Australian economy and grow the game of Rugby in Australia and the Pacific.”

Australia’s minister for sport Richard Colbeck added: “The third largest sports event in the world, the Rugby World Cup also offers the potential to provide substantial benefits including a much-needed boost to the Australian tourism industry, as well as trade, infrastructure, and jobs.”

Australia is currently the preferred candidate to host Rugby World Cup 2027 and Rugby Australia will now consider with World Rugby the potential to also bid to host Rugby World Cup 2029.”

The next edition of the RWC will be the 2021 women’s edition, which will be held in New Zealand from October 8 to November 12 this year having been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The next edition of the men’s RWC will be held next year in France, while England is the preferred candidate to host the women’s tournament in 2025.

The US is expected to be named as host of the 2031 men’s tournament and the 2033 women’s edition.