Preparations for Japan's hosting of Rugby World Cup 2019 continue to gather pace with the launch of the process to select the team camps that will host the world's top rugby teams.
Japan Rugby 2019, the local organising body of the first RWC to take place in Asia, will run the process in partnership with World Rugby, inviting organisations, schools, colleges and universities from all over Japan to make submissions in line with key minimum criteria stipulated by World Rugby.
Organisations that meet minimum criteria will be considered. A team camp consists of five core components: team hotel, outdoor training venues, indoor venue, gym and swimming pool.
Japan Rugby 2019 will consider a variety of locations for team camps, both in and around host cities where match venues are located, in neighbouring towns and cities, and much further afield, to provide teams with a variety of training environments and locations. In turn, this will increase the tournament reach throughout the country, giving local communities the opportunity to engage with one of the world’s biggest sports events.
Rigorous selection process
All prospective team bases will be subject to a rigorous selection process which includes an expansive and detailed programme of site visits as well as liaison with the competing Rugby World Cup 2019 teams.
Team camps will play a key role in the tournament, hosting the 20 participating teams in the lead up to and throughout Rugby World Cup 2019. Japan Rugby 2019 will identify the best-possible facilities to ensure the optimum training environments for the world’s best players to perform to the highest level.
Chief Executive of Japan Rugby 2019 Akira Shimazu said: “Our task as organising committee is to provide world-class facilities to allow the teams prepare for matches in the best possible way so they can showcase Rugby World Cup to the world. The tournament will attract vast numbers of domestic fans, as well as up to 500,000 visitors into Japan. And for a city to become a team camp presents a huge opportunity to show off that part of the country to a wide audience.
“Before they apply to be a team camp, we want the cities or prefectures to understand those opportunities and undertake to make the most of them. It is a unique chance for them and we want them to grasp it with both hands.
“Preparations for RWC 2019 are progressing well – this is going to be a wonderful celebration of rugby and we hope the teams and their supporters are looking forward to coming to Japan in 2019. We will be making sure they receive a warm welcome during their stay.”
World Rugby Chairman Bernard Lapasset added: "Rugby World Cup 2019 will be a career pinnacle for players and team management, showcasing the very best of rugby, its character-building values and Japan within a nationwide festival that will engage, innovate and excite. Team camps are at the very heart of that festival providing the facilities and environment for the world’s best players to perform to the highest level while enabling the tournament to reach out to the length and breadth of the nation.”
Japan Rugby 2019 will accept tenders from prospective team camp cities from 1 August 2016 and, following an extensive evaluation and site visit process, successful cities will be announced in mid-2017.