Twickenham Stadium is to host the final of the 2015 Rugby World Cup, it was announced this week.
The 26-man International Rugby Board meeting in Dublin voted to ratify a recommendation from the World Cup board that confirmed England as 2015 hosts, with Japan to stage the tournament in 2019.
The Rugby Football Union beat competition from South Africa and Italy after submitting a commercial package worth an estimated £300m to the global game.
The 2015 World Cup will run from September 4 to October 17, when the final will be played at Twickenham.
London Mayor Boris Johnson hailed today’s announcement saying it added to London’s “outstanding calendar” of international sporting events.
He said: “London has some of the finest sporting venues in the world - Twickenham, of course, as well as Wembley and the Emirates Stadium.
“And it goes without saying that rugby fans heading to the capital from across the world in 2015 will also enjoy a hearty welcome, as well as an unbeatable range of other activities and attractions.”
Matches will be staged in 10 cities and 12 stadia across the country, including Wembley, Old Trafford, the Emirates Stadium, Anfield and the Millennium Stadium, which is the only venue being used outside England.
The last time England hosted the tournament was in 1991, when Will Carling's team were beaten in the final by Australia.
Since then, rugby union has turned professional and the World Cup has developed into the globe's third biggest sporting event.
Hosting the 2015 Rugby World Cup is estimated by Deloittes to be worth £2.1bn to the British economy.
Francis Baron, chief executive of the RFU, said: “The RFU, and every rugby fan in England, will be thrilled that we have been chosen to host the Rugby World Cup 2015.
“We have made a commitment to the IRB Council to host the most successful tournament ever, building on the outstanding success of France 2007 and what we are sure will be a great tournament in New Zealand in 2011.
“We will not disappoint them.”
Lawrence Dallaglio, a Rugby World Cup winner in 2003, said: “The world’s best players will now have the chance to play in some of the world’s best stadia and supporters can look forward to a feast of rugby.
“It’s almost enough to bring me out of retirement.”
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