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Melville Hints at 2027 RWC Bid for USA

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Melville Hints at 2027 RWC Bid for USA

David Barpal photo.

Nigel Melville has indicated to World Rugby that USA Rugby will shoot to host the 2027 Rugby World Cup.

Melville cited the growth of the game at the youth and collegiate level as indication that there will be a fan base in 12 years. In addition, the United States in nicely positioned in terms of depth of sports venues and hotel capacity to host a major tournament.

“We look around the world to see where the opportunities (to grow the sport) are and you see nations like Tonga, Samoa and Fiji with potential,” he continued. “But I think more emphasis should be placed on countries like China, Japan, Germany and the USA where rugby can have a really big impact.

“We went to the initial planning meetings for 2023 and agreed that the commercial model doesn’t work for us at this stage… but we will look to aim to host the 2027 World Cup.

The big issue for the Rugby World Cup in the USA is that the tournament will likely be held during a hugely busy time in the American sports calendar, with the NFL starting its season, baseball getting to the playoffs, and soccer, as well, busy. So while there are many stadiums around the USA that could host international rugby games, the question is whether they will be available for the RWC.

What will possibly happen is that many stadiums will be in use, but those stadiums will only be used for a short time, allowing football teams to return from a couple of road games with no interruption. But college and pro football, baseball, and soccer stadiums are all potentially in play.

USA MNt Head Coach Mike Tolkin chimed in on the possibility of having the Rugby World Cup in the USA, as well.

“It would be similar to the soccer World Cup back in 1994. America has all the structures in place for the big crowds. We wouldn’t get it before then (2027) because that’s the way it goes but, if we were to have it at some time, it would go very well."