Rugby World Cup 2011 offers an unprecedented opportunity for New Zealand to showcase itself on the world stage. For six weeks, we will be hosting the biggest sporting event held anywhere in the world this year, and we plan to make the most of it.
Tournament organisers are now forecasting at least 95,000 international visitors, including leaders from Pacific and other nations. Previous estimates released last year had put the expected number of visitors at 75,000. RWC 2011 will also be watched by billions of viewers in over 100 countries, and with 2000 international media attending the event, we will taking every opportunity to showcase the very best of New Zealand to international audiences.
Visitors may be here for the rugby, but they are also tourists and business people. This is the first time a Rugby World Cup host nation has staged a nationwide showcase and festival alongside the tournament.
The REAL New Zealand Festival and the REAL Showcase will demonstrate New Zealand’s unique talents in food & beverage, culture, business innovation, creativity, and industry to the world.
The 2011 Rugby World Cup will be the seventh Rugby World Cup, a quadrennial international rugby union competition inaugurated in 1987. At a meeting of the International Rugby Board (IRB) held in Dublin on 17 November 2005, New Zealand was selected as the host country. It will be the largest sporting event ever held in New Zealand, and the Reserve Bank estimates the tournament will inject over $700 million extra into New Zealand’s economy.
The tournament will be played from 9 September to 23 October 2011.
Twenty teams were allocated into Pools at a RWC 2011 Pool Allocation Draw held inside the giant New Zealand Rugby Ball venue in London on December 1, 2008. Russia will be the only country making its World Cup debut in 2011.
Twelve venues across New Zealand will host matches for RWC 2011. In addition, 23 host cities around the country will provide training facilities for the teams to give as many communities as is reasonably possible the chance to experience the excitement of the Tournament, and through this, to truly bring to life New Zealand’s “Stadium of Four Million”.