THE Shay will host a full international for the first time in two years’ time after being named as one of 16 venues for the 2013 Rugby League World Cup.
The Calderdale Council-owned stadium will host a group fixture after joining big-city venues, including Bristol, on the list unveiled by Halifax’s former chief executive and RLWC tournament director Nigel Wood in Manchester on Monday morning.
A total of 34 bids, comprising 30 stadia, 47 team training sites and 87 team base camps, were submitted to the RFL by the July deadline, with each undergoing a detailed inspection from the 2013 team.
Wood said: “I would like to congratulate all the hosts who have been successful in their bids to host matches or teams in what I am confident will be a World Cup that enhances the UK’s golden decade of sport.
“We experienced massive interest in hosting matches from all across Europe and the bidding process proved to be hugely competitive.
“In putting together their bids over the last 12 months, the successful candidates have demonstrated a level of commitment which suggests the 2013 Rugby League World Cup can exceed everyone’s expectations.
“It has been a fantastic and inspiring bidding process and we have been extremely impressed with the quality, detail and diverse nature of the host bids received.
The Shay’s acceptance - which comes more than a decade after the ground hosted a fixture in the 2000 Emerging Nations World Cup - represents a timely boost for the Council, who have spent around £5million completing the venue’s unfinished East Stand.
The RFL are thought to have opted to concentrate the competition largely in the game’s heartlands after incurring heavy losses financial losses the last time the competition was held in this country 11 years ago.
A full RLWC fixture list is still to be confirmed, but the the final will be held on November 30, 2013, with Old Trafford tipped as the likely venue.
Full list of RLWC venues:
Avignon -The Parc des Sports Stadium will host a group match.
Bristol - The Memorial Ground will stage a group match with the city also hosting a team base camp. Filton College will be used as a team training venue.
Calderdale - The Shay Stadium in Halifax will host a group match.
Copeland - The new Pow Beck Stadium in Whitehaven will host group matches with the Cumbria Sports Academy being used as a team training venue.
Hull - Both the KC Stadium and Craven Park will host group matches with the city also hosting two team base camps and team training venues.
Kirklees -The Galpharm Stadium will host a group match.
Leeds - Headingley Carnegie Stadium will host a group match and a quarter-final with two teams setting up team base camps in the city along with a team training venue being utilised.
Limerick - Thomond Park will host a group match.
Perpignan - The Stade Gilbert Brutus will host a group match.
Neath - The Gnoll will host a group match.
Rochdale - Spotland Stadium will host a group match.
Salford -The new City of Salford Stadium will host a group match and the city will also host a team base camp.
St Helens -The new Langtree Park Stadium will host a group match.
Warrington -The Halliwell Jones Stadium will host a group match and quarter-final. The town will also host a team base camp and the University of Chester will be used as a team training venue.
Wigan -The Leigh Sports Village will host a group match and will be used as a training venue. The DW Stadium will host a quarter-final.
Wrexham -The Glyndŵr University Racecourse Stadium will host a group match and a quarter final. Wrexham will also host a team base camp and training venue.
Full story and reaction in Tuesday’s Courier