Cape Town - South African rugby lovers were left stunned as France was awarded the rights to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup on Wednesday.
The decision came as a major shock after World Rugby had last month named South Africa as the recommended hosts of the tournament following an independent audit.
That, it turns out, counted for nothing as France secured their second World Cup since 2007.
South Africa, who last hosted the tournament in 1995, will be wondering what more they have to do to host it again.
As was to be expected, South African rugby lovers on Twitter exploded.
Here are some of the responses that jumped out at us.
Well.. the money the govt was going to put into the World Cup can at least go towards funding free tertiary education....— Khanyiso Tshwaku (@kaymorizm) November 15, 2017
Should've just put 3 names in a hat and drawn one and not worried about an exhaustive and expensive technical review. #RWC2023— Craig Ray (@craigray11) November 15, 2017
The message is clear. Rugby World Cups are about money. What a joke.— Brenden Nel (@BrendenNel) November 15, 2017
Given the recommendation, this is an indictment on SA the country, not the SA bid. Thanks Jacob, as you were with pillaging the once rainbow nation ??— Front Row Grunt (@FrontRowGrunt) November 15, 2017
How does one justify having three Northern Hemisphere Rugby World Cups in a row?— E L M A S M I T (@Elmakapelma) November 15, 2017
This smacks of NH arrogance.
Secret ballots with elected officials ... now that's professional transparency ... World Rugby every bit as dirty and disgusting as FIFA ... Disgraceful #RWC2023— Mark Keohane (@mark_keohane) November 15, 2017
No Commonwealth Games, no Global League T20 and no 2023 Rugby World Cup. Tough year for South Africa’s hosting abilities....— Myron Naicker (@myronnaicker) November 15, 2017
“We didn’t win the bid, so we will just win the tournament in 2023 instead!” pic.twitter.com/EjMXlYQc2y— Ben Karpinski (@followthebounce) November 15, 2017
Speaking generally though, there is something grotesque about hosting a major sporting event when your country is in the midst of spiralling out of control on critical fronts. Personally I'm glad we didn't get it. #RWC2023— Ryan Vrede (@Ryan_Vrede) November 15, 2017
South African sport:— Jean Smyth (@JeanSmyth) November 15, 2017
*GLT20 - postponed
*CWG 2022 - ditched
*Russia 2018 - couch
*RWC 2023 - merde
"Open and transparent" World Cup process followed by a "secret ballot." What a contradiction; what an embarrassment— Dan Retief (@Retief_Dan) November 15, 2017