Rugby Australia formally bid to host 2021 Women's Rugby World Cup
Rugby Australia chief Raelene Castle is confident of delivering a record-breaking women's Rugby World Cup, if Australia wins hosting rights for the 2021 tournament.
Castle has announced Newcastle and the Hunter region in NSW will host the tournament, if the bid is approved.
The bid will be submitted on Friday with the World Rugby Council expected to announce the successful applicant in November.
Castle anticipated a number of other nations would bid for the tournament.
Castle expected four or five other nations, including New Zealand, to bid for the tournament, which has never been held in the southern hemisphere in the eight times it has been contested since 1991.
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"We know our Kiwi friends over the ditch are putting a bid forward so it's important to make sure we get out there, promote our bid and the professionalism and opportunity we have here in this market," Castle said.
The bid is part of the NSW government's 10 World Cups in 10 years strategy, with Sports Minister Stuart Ayres predicting it could potentially inject close to $23 million into his state's economy.
Castle felt NSW and Australia's track record in hosting major sports events would stand the bid in good stead.
"The confidence to raise the commercial support and governmental support is a really important part of our history," Castle said.
"They (World Rugby) will have confidence that we are going to be able to deliver a successful tournament and really take the women's World Cup to the next level."
Matches would be played at Maitland No.1 Sportsground and Newcastle Sportsground No.2, which have a capacity of up to 6000.
The final would be held at the Newcastle's McDonald Jones Stadium.
'With two boutique stadiums it will feel really full and the girls will have a great experience, regardless of what countries are playing," Castle said.
"At the McDonald Jones Stadium we've got a chance of 40,000 people in there which would break the world record for a women's rugby game.
"We want to make sure we draw the biggest crowd ever to watch a women's World Cup final and hopefully to watch Australia play in that final."
Castle said World Rugby had not committed to staging a women's World Cup in the southern hemisphere but she was upbeat.
"They also understand the importance of making sure that the game develops right across the world, so I would expect that's a huge advantage for us," Castle said.