France wants to host 2025 World Cup

New International Rugby League chairman Troy Grant is pressing for France to host the next Rugby League World Cup in 2025.

France, who hosted the inaugural tournament in 1954, are set to fill the hole created by the collapse of the bid by provisional hosts America, who are now being seen by Grant as a potential venue for 2029.

Grant, a former NSW Police Minister and Deputy Premier who has succeeded New Zealander Greg Barclay as chairman of the international body, outlined his vision at a media briefing conducted via zoom in which he promised transparency and accessibility.

Grant, who was appointed as an independent director in February 2020, says the IRL has ditched the traditional bidding process for hosting World Cups and he has begun talks over 2025 with new French president Luc Lacoste.

“France has to be a strategic priority,” he said. “Hopefully we can build a compelling argument for the French Government to be the host in partnership with us.

“I pitched to the French Government that the Rugby League World Cup would be a trifecta of international events following the Rugby World Cup in 2023 and the Paris Olympics in 2024.

“We have to get that development back into France, which will be critical for another step up into broader Europe as well.

“They are happy to either have it wholly within France or look at a multi-nation format with France as the lead.”

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