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Albion launch rugby World Cup bid
Albion are vying with Southampton to be a venue for the 2015 Rugby World Cup.
And that could lead to The Amex staging an England match in the nation’s next global sporting event.
Rugby chiefs have already been to the Seagulls’ stadium. They were impressed by the facilities and will meet next month to discuss whether The Amex or Southampton’s St Mary’s Stadium is their preferred South Coast venue.
Martin Perry , Albion’s managing director, confirmed to The Argus: “We have been approached by the England Rugby 2015 Committee. They have been on a tour of the stadium. They have asked us a series of questions and now have to put it to their Board.”
Brighton and Hove City Council have also been approached and quizzed as part of the consultation process.
If The Amex is chosen it would be in contention to host two or three category two matches.
They could include England or one of the other home nations against a smaller rugby-playing country, such as Tonga or Western Samoa.
The tournament will be held in September but will not clash directly with the football season, as it has been timed to coincide with an international break.
Fears about damage to the pitch are likely to be over-ridden by the huge commercial benefits to the club and the city of being involved in the competition.
Other venues under consideration include the Olympic Stadium, Wembley, The Emirates and Twickenham in London, Villa Park and Pride Park in the Midlands, Old Trafford and St James’ Park in the North and the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff.
Some like Anfield have already been ruled out, because the pitch is not long enough to accommodate the run-off areas behind the posts required for rugby.