20 Jan 2012

Sport: IRB says smaller countries will get fairer go at next World Cup

9:19 am on 20 January 2012

Rugby World Cup organisers have promised a fairer deal for the smaller countries at the 2015 tournament in England, following criticism of the unbalanced playing schedule last year in New Zealand.

Managing Director of Rugby World Cup Ltd and CEO of the IRB, Mike Miller, says the match schedule of the 2011 tournament had been an improvement on previous editions but accepted it had still been tough on many smaller countries.

Countries such as Samoa, Canada and Georgia often had only three or four days between matches, while Japan were forced to play three times in 11 days.

Mike Miller says Fiji, Samoa and Tonga were more competitive in the last two World Cups because of the money the IRB invested in them.