Cape Town - Irish Sports Minister Shane Ross has raised serious reservations about South Africa's bid to land the 2023 Rugby World Cup.
Ross criticised how the evaluation report scored South Africa in terms of stadia and believes larger stadiums aren't necessarily a positive.
“I’m unhappy with the comparisons made with the South African stadia. Because the South African stadia are very, very large. And they are going to have, obviously for minor matches, they are going to have empty stadia. Whereas we will have full ones,” Ross told the Irish Independent.
“I am very unhappy with the result. The Taoiseach and I are going to make further efforts as are other ministers to persuade people to vote in our favour. We’ve got a week to go and we are very optimistic we are going to make it,” he added.When asked what is being done about the situation, Ross said the focus is on making phone calls.“Several phone calls have been made to people who are very very key in all this. The IRFU are obviously campaigning at the moment as well to do so. It’s a matter of persuasion. The people who have recommended it have got it wrong. We have all the facilities available and we think they could also be persuaded by this. I’m not giving up under any circumstance,” Ross said.“I haven’t made any calls at all as of now. But I’m been working with the department in getting people to make what calls are necessary."