Team South Africa, led by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, will make its bid presentation to host the Rugby World Cup 2023 tournament at the Royal Garden Hotel in Kensington, London, on Monday.
Ramaphosa had travelled to London on Sunday for the presentation to the World Rugby Council, the Presidency said in a statement.
Ramaphosa was supported by Sport and Recreation Minister Thulas Nxesi and Deputy Sports Minister Gert Oosthuizen. The high-powered South Africa delegation also included SA Rugby president Mark Alexander and CEO Jurie Roux, who would lay out South Africa’s technically and commercially compelling case to host the tournament 22 years after former President Nelson Mandela handed the Webb Ellis trophy to Francois Pienaar at a packed Ellis Park Stadium in Johannesburg.
Ireland and France are the other contenders for the 2023 tournament which is set to take place 200 years after the invention, according to legend, of the game of rugby by William Webb Ellis.
Ramaphosa’s participation and his leadership of the mission to London symbolised and demonstrates government’s deep commitment and support to return the tournament to the African continent in the 21st century, the presidency said.
"Contractually, this commitment is demonstrated by the fact that the South African government has, as the lead partner in the bid process, signed off on all the requirements stipulated by the World Rugby Council, satisfying more than the required minimum guarantee in the process.
"Deputy President Ramaphosa has congratulated Team South Africa on its preparations to date for the presentation of the bid and has called on all South Africans to show their support for Team South Africa as the delegation enters the final stages of securing the Rugby World Cup 2023," the Presidency said.
The World Rugby Council will announce the host of the 2023 Rugby World Cup on November 15, 2017.