Communities the length and breadth of Japan will share in the excitement of hosting Rugby World Cup 2019 following the announcement of the provisional selection of 52 team camps where the teams will stay and train.
IRELAND RWC 2019 POOL A – PROVISIONALLY SELECTED TEAM CAMPS:
Kakegawa City/Iwata City
* Kobe City
– Team camps with * next to it refers to the facilities that were additionally procured following World Rugby’s instruction to ensure the highest-possible standard of facilities
Drawn in Pool A, Ireland will open the tournament against Celtic rivals Scotland at the International Stadium in Yokohama on Sunday, September 22 (kick-off 4.45pm local time/8.45am Irish time), before moving on to Shizuoka to play World Cup hosts Japan the following Saturday (kick-off 4.15pm local time/8.15am Irish time).
Romania, the recent Europe 1 qualifiers, will provide the opposition for Joe Schmidt’s men at the Kobe Misaki Stadium on Thursday, October 3 (kick-off 7.15pm local time/11.15am Irish time), and Ireland wrap up the pool stages against the play-off winners from Europe/Oceania at Hakatanomori Football Stadium in Fukuoka on Saturday, October 12 (kick-off 7.45pm local time/11.45am Irish time).
Mirroring the excitement generated by a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for Japan, applications to host team camps were received by 90 cities and prefectures the length and breadth of Japan. Today’s announcement follows approval by World Rugby of the provisional selection made by the Japan Rugby 2019 Organising Committee after a rigorous process that has team performance and community legacy at heart.
The announcement represents another major milestone in preparation for Asia’s first Rugby World Cup, extending the reach and engagement of the showcase tournament while delivering the stage for the world’s top teams to perform to their potential.
The search for team camps began in 2016 and all candidates were subject to a comprehensive selection and inspection process against key hosting criteria. Every Rugby World Cup 2019 team camp will consist of an outdoor and indoor training venue, a swimming pool, gym and accommodation and will be utilised by the teams during and in the run-up to the tournament, which starts on Friday, September 20, 2019.
Camps comprise out-of-city options and match city options (all match city options are no more than 45 minutes away from the match venue).
The formal appointment of these cities/prefectures as team camp hosts will be finalised upon the conclusion of an official agreement between the city or prefecture and the organising committee. Applicants who missed out will have further opportunity via festival of rugby activities, ensuring everyone in Japan is part of the tournament experience. The team camps for the knock-out phases will be announced in due course.
World Rugby Chairman Bill Beaumont said: “Rugby World Cup 2019 is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for everyone in Japan to get behind the tournament and deliver an exceptional welcome for teams and fans as hosts. Team camps are at the heart of the tournament experience for teams, a home away from home, while representing an opportunity to further the reach and community engagement of the event. The legacy of upgraded infrastructure will also benefit communities for years to come.”
President and CEO of the Rugby World Cup 2019 Organising Committee, Akira Shimazu, commented: “First of all, I would like to extend my deepest gratitude to all of the cities/prefectures that applied to be a host of a team camp for the Rugby World Cup 2019. I would also like to congratulate all the cities/prefectures that were provisionally selected by the organising committee for this important role.
“All of the facilities that were submitted as part of the application process were of very high quality and thus we were able to provide the qualified teams with a large range of options.
“Team camps are an essential part of the tournament as these communities are where the qualified teams will train and prepare during the tournament period. We will work closely with the cities/prefectures that were provisionally selected as hosts of a team camp to progress preparations so that the players and team management gathering from all around the world can perform to their optimal level during the tournament.
“For cities/prefectures that were unfortunately not selected, there remain some exciting opportunities to contribute to the festival that is Rugby World Cup 2019. We express our deep appreciation of their enthusiasm and commitment and look forward to their continued support in the run-up to and during the tournament.”
Just over 500 days remain until Rugby World Cup 2019 and preparations continue to further accelerate with the beginning of the Front Row/Supporters’ Club priority sales phase on Saturday, May 19.
Further information about the ticketing programme can be found at www.rugbyworldcup.com/tickets and Mastercard, as a Worldwide Partner of Rugby World Cup 2019, is offering those who apply for tickets using their Mastercard the chance to receive a double entry in the ticketing ballot for the opportunity to secure tickets to each of the matches they apply for.