The International Rugby Board has announced that Argentina will host the 2010 IRB Junior World Championship. The announcement is a further boost to the ongoing development of rugby in South America.
IRB Chairman Bernard Lapasset said: “The IRB is delighted that the 2010 IRB Junior World Championship will be played in South America and awarding it to Argentina is a very exciting development in the evolution of the competition.
“The Championship is hugely important to the IRB in terms of providing a platform for the next generation of international rugby stars to showcase their skills on the international stage and develop into elite athletes.
“It also plays a significant role in increasing global playing standards.
“Argentina has the facilities and infrastructure to ensure that the tournament will be organised to a very high standard which is vital for its success.
“Rugby in Argentina is at an all-time high, boosted by the success of the Pumas at the 2007 Rugby World Cup.
“The Unión Argentina de Rugby (UAR) has successfully implemented a new High Performance strategy which is aimed at raising the standard of rugby within the country through a series of IRB-funded elite coaching and player development initiatives.
“The Union has achieved significant growth in player numbers since 2007 and continues to produce outstanding results on the international stage.
“A key strategic objective of the Union is to bring elite international rugby to Argentina on a regular basis and hosting the IRB Junior World Championship next year provides an excellent opportunity to showcase the best Under-20 players in the world to its passionate rugby community.”
The tournament will be played in Argentina’s Littoral region.
Rosario, Santa Fe and Paraná will all host matches, bringing a festival atmosphere to a tournament which provides the future stars of the game with a high intensity platform to showcase their talent.
IRB Tournament Manager Philippe Bourdarias said: “We are extremely impressed with what the Littoral region can offer.
“Aside from the world class training and playing facilities, the Littoral region is ideally situated to reach out to new rugby fans in an area where there has been significant growth in participation in recent years.
“I am looking forward to what will be an exciting chapter in the history of the tournament.”
UAR President Porfirio Carreras added: “The UAR is proud to again be hosting an IRB age grade tournament.
“The 2005 Under-21 World Championship gave us an indication of what is possible to achieve and I am sure that this tournament, with the passionate support of the Argentinian public, will be a great success, delivering rugby to a wide audience and attracting new fans to the game.”
The 2009 IRB TOSHIBA Junior World Championship in Japan kicks off this Friday (June 5) with 40 competition matches played over four host venues before the final in Tokyo on June 21.
The reigning world champions are New Zealand. Full coverage is available here.