People gather at Sammy Marks Square for the announcement of who will host the 2023 Rugby World Cup. Picture: Sakhile Ndlazi

SAKHILE NDLAZI 

Excitement is building up ahead of the 2023 Rugby World announcement at Sammy Marks Square, where the host country will be revealed at 3:30 pm.

Also expected to make an appearance is Gauteng MEC for Sport Faith Mazibuko and Deputy Minister of Sports Gert Oosthuizen.

Patriots wearing their Bok jerseys and flying the South African flags high and fearlessly have gathered in the numbers for the long awaited announcement.

Masego Khutumelo of Atteridgeville said she was hopeful that South Africa would bag the World Cup. “Win or lose we are still behind the boys. But I feel good about this one,” she said.

Mornay Van Niekerk from Eersterust said South Africa could use some good news after the bad sporting year it has had. “ Bafana Bafana disappointed us by loosing to Senegal and not qualifying for the Russia 2018 World Cup. Winning the Rugby World Cup would really be a moral booster for the country,” he said.

Artists entertain the crowd prior to the announcement of who will host the 2023 Rugby World Cup. Video: Sakhile Ndlazi


A stage and a huge screen have been erected at the square for the announcement. From about 12pm people were entertained by music and festivities. Comedian “Sammy Fever” is keeping the crowd entertained and giving away Springbok jerseys and scarfs.

South Africa’s bid is already looking extremely strong. It was announced as “the clear leader” by World Rugby a week ago and the Rugby World Cup Ltd board – which includes the chairman, deputy chairman and CEO of World Rugby – unanimously supported the recommendation. 
The country is up against against France and Ireland.

The World Cup will be a great economic booster for the country.

It shows that hosting the 2023 Rugby World Cup will deliver R 27.3 billion in direct, indirect and induced economic impact. There will be 38 600 temporary jobs created or permanent jobs sustained. 

It will bring R11 billion in direct spend and R1.4 billion in taxes. Of this, R5.7 billion will flowed to low-income households. 

Some 200 000 tourists will visit South Africa.