From one exhilarating Women’s World Cup to another, there are just 2 years to go until women’s rugby takes centre stage as England hosts Rugby World Cup 2025.
And Brighton & Hove will be at the heart of the action during this prestigious sporting event, as one of the eight host cities chosen to host matches and welcome teams and fans from across the world.
World Rugby and the RFU, with support from the UK Government, have confirmed the host cities, venues and tournament dates that will provide the stage for the biggest-ever celebration of women’s rugby.
Councillor Alan Robins, chair of Brighton & Hove City Council’s Culture, Heritage, Sport, Tourism and Economic Committee said: “We are thrilled, once again to have been selected to showcase women’s sport at the highest level.
“Having hosted the Lionesses during their journey to becoming European Champions last year, it will be wonderful to welcome rugby players and fans from around the world in 2025.
“Being a host city for the Women’s Rugby World Cup, brings with it a fantastic opportunity to open up more opportunities for women and girls to play as well as involve local people in the tournament and enhance our growing reputation as a major sporting city.”
Growing the sport
Kicking off on 22 August and concluding with the Rugby World Cup final, on 27 September, the 10th edition of this showcase event promises to be the most accessible ever.
The host cities and venues have been chosen to reflect the tournament’s core mission of growing the sport, taking rugby across the country, engaging with diverse communities, providing a family-focused festival of rugby.
The tournament will see 16 teams compete to be crowned world champions, with games played at:
- Brighton & Hove, Brighton and Hove Albion Stadium
- Bristol – Ashton Gate
- Exeter – Sandy Park
- London – Twickenham Stadium
- Manchester – Salford Community Stadium
- Northampton – Franklin’s Gardens
- Sunderland – Stadium of Light
- York – York Community Stadium.
Brighton & Hove was one of the host cities for the men’s Rugby World Cup in 2015, with matches at the Brighton & Hove Albion Stadium including the historic shock 34-32 Japan victory over South Africa.
More recently, the Lionesses thrilled crowds at the stadium on their journey to become UEFA European Champions.
Brighton & Hove Albion chief executive and deputy chairman Paul Barber said, “We’re delighted to be chosen as one of the eight host venues for Rugby World Cup 2025.
“The men’s game in the 2015 World Cup when Japan beat South Africa was one of the most amazing days we’ve had at the stadium and I’m sure the matches we host in 2025 will create many more lasting memories.
“Our women and girls programme is an integral and hugely important part of our commitment to women’s football at the club and we’re delighted to extend that support for women’s sport to world-class rugby too.
“We look forward to welcoming the teams and the supporters attending the Rugby World Cup in 2025 and to showcasing our stadium and the city of Brighton & Hove.”
Red Rose and Saracens player Jess Breach, added: “After 2015 with the boys, it’s amazing to have rugby come back to Brighton with the girls for the 2025 Rugby World Cup.
Brighton is a brilliant seaside city where I played when I was younger which makes it even more exciting. Hopefully we will see a lot of you there in 2025!”
Rugby World Cup 2021 smashed records across the board, with more than 150,000 fans attending games, around 1.8 million viewers in England and New Zealand tuning into the final and over 156 million video views on social media.
Canada, England, France and New Zealand have already qualified for Rugby World Cup 2025 after finishing in the top four of RWC 2021, with the remaining positions to be filled via World Rugby’s new women’s international 15s tournament, WXV, and regional competitions in 2024.
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