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RLIF goes back to the drawing board for 2025 World Cup

The Rugby League International Federation (RLIF) has opted to re-tender hosting rights to its 2025 World Cup amid uncertainty surrounding the event’s current promoter, but has refused to discount the possibility it will remain in the United States and Canada.

In November 2016, the RLIF confirmed that its showpiece event would take place outside of Australasia and Europe for the first time by awarding the rights to the two North American nations.

Moore Sports International (MSI), an Australian sports agency, headed the bid for the events but has since encountered financial difficulties with the Sydney Morning Herald newspaper stating it is no longer in a position to support the event.

“At the last board meeting last month, we made a decision to re-tender the 2025 World Cup,” RLIF chief executive Nigel Wood said. “That doesn’t indicate in stone we’re not in the United States, but we weren’t in a position to go forward under the existing proposition that had been made.

“We will be re-tendering that during the course of 2019. It could go anywhere, we’re not ruling anything in or out at this stage. We’ll see what the market tells us.”

In an effort to raise awareness for the 2025 World Cup, MSI took a Test match between England and New Zealand to the US city of Denver in June. While the game was well received, the Herald said a crowd of less than 20,000 at Broncos Stadium at Mile High resulted in MSI suffering a seven-figure loss.

The US and Canada had also bid to stage the 2021 World Cup but lost out to England, which was confirmed as host in October 2016. The World Cup takes place every four years, with the 2017 event held in Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea.