“It’s quite shocking and alarming” – 2025 World Cup reportedly in doubt

Josh McAllister
Latrell Mitchell, RLWC2025. SWPix

Picture by Allan McKenzie/SWpix.com.

Reports Down Under have stated that the 2025 World Cup in France is on the ‘brink of collapse’.  

The Australian has reported that a crisis meeting between the International Rugby League Federation and French officials will take place on Friday amid concerns.

Former French Prime Minister Jean Castex announced last year in Paris that France will host the 17th Rugby League World Cup in 2025.

128 matches were announced to be held across 40 venues for five weeks from early October.

And for the first time ever, plans revealed that France will bring together four competitions – men, women, wheelchair and youth.

The Australian also reported that the The IRLF have been working on contingency plans if France can no longer host the next World Cup, with the 2021 tournament delayed by a year in England due to the pandemic. 

It adds to the concerns previously reported on potential withdrawal of funding for the tournament. 

Sky Sports reporter Kyle Walker shared the news ahead of Wakefield’s clash with Hull, with French journalists admitting the story is not without merit. 

RLWC2025 reportedly in doubt

Reacting to the news, ex-England international Jon Wilkin added:The change in government means a transitional period and a new sports minister in France. 

“If these things aren’t set in concrete, contracts aren’t signed, then obviously it throws that World Cup into question.

“It’s quite shocking and quite alarming and it’s off the back of the World Cup that we had over here that I thought was a tremendous success.

“International rugby league is really important and I was looking forward to that World Cup.”

The 2025 tournament would see France host their first stand alone World Cup since 1972, having hosted games in 2023 in Avignon and Perpignan. 

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