France trim 2023 World Cup cities to nine

Paris - The Parc des Princes, home to Paris Saint-Germain, will not stage any games should France's bid to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup be successful.

Bid chief Claude Atcher said Wednesday that nine cities had been retained, with Paris' Parc des Princes, Lens and Montpellier missing out.

The nine successful cities are Lille (Stade Pierre-Mauroy), Nantes (La Beaujoire), Bordeaux (Matmut Atlantique), Toulouse (Le Stadium), Marseille (Velodrome), Nice (Allianz Riviera), Lyon (Parc OL), Saint-Etienne (Stade Geoffroy-Guichard) and Saint-Denis (Stade de France), the latter just outside Paris.

The candidacy team wanted to retain the Parc des Princes but could not obtain the green light from the Paris mayor's office, bound by an occupancy agreement with QSI, the Qatari owner of PSG opposed to the ground hosting any rugby matches in 2023.

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