Losing the Rugby World Cup bid

 

Sir, – So much for Scotland and Wales.

They didn’t support us in 1972 either.

It’s so disappointing to see New Zealand not supporting us as our votes were crucial to their hosting an excellent World Cup in 2011.

I remember standing on grassy banks in New Plymouth to watch Ireland play the US, and the standard of stadiums was not an issue then.

Sadly, politics and money are now the decision makers.

We could have done an outstanding job in creating a people’s rugby world cup, and the members of our presentation team deserve our support for the job they did, albeit an unsuccessful one. – Yours, etc,

NIALL PELLY,

Foxrock,

Dublin 18.

Sir, – Perhaps the demise of our Rugby World Cup bid was in the sour grapes (not South African, of course) of our strategy change from Invictus to Vindictus! – Yours, etc,

RICHARD FALLON,

Malahide,

Co Dublin.

Sir, – I wish to demur from what is supposed to be grave national insult and disappointment that Ireland was not awarded the 2023 Rugby Union World Cup.

To enter the bidding process for this vanity project, the State underwrote a €200 million guarantee to World Rugby against any loss at the event.

The three big sports bodies – rugby, soccer, and GAA – were all the main beneficiaries of this event if it went ahead, with no risk to their own finances.

They have already had close to a quarter of a billion euro granted to their two big Dublin stadiums.

The supposed glasnost displayed by the GAA in opening its stadiums was a shrewd move.

Some €60 million was already given to renew Páirc Uí Chaoimh and millions were earmarked for upgrading Killarney’s Fitzgerald Stadium.

Contrast the Government indulgence of the big boys with the fate of other sports whose endless quest for any facility goes unheeded.

Cycling velodrome? Planned to be one of the key features at Abbottstown but nothing in sight.

A quarter-mile drag-racing track for those only occasionally allowed onto bumpy rural airfields?

The Irish real tennis championships are played in England every year because the State resolutely opposes any notion of opening the Dublin court it was bequeathed by the Guinness family 75 years ago!

So now that the State has been saved €200 million by the good offices of the world’s rugby governors, perhaps our Minister for Sport will go and seek even a fraction of that for the small-fry who wait for the sporting crumbs that has been their lot to date. – Yours, etc,

TED NEVILLE,

Douglas,

Co Cork.