Rugby World Cup 2015 the ‘fifth biggest single-sport event ever’
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Rugby World Cup 2015 the ‘fifth biggest single-sport event ever’

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England’s hosting of the 2015 rugby World Cup was the fifth largest single-sport event ever, according to a report compiled by Ernst & Young.

The Economic Impact of the Rugby World Cup 2015 revealed that 2.5m tickets were sold for the event, with 98 per cent of the available allocation sold at the 13 venues across the country.

Hosted between 18 September and 31 October, the competition generated £2.3bn (US$3.4bn, €3bn) in economic output according to the report, adding £1.1bn (US$1.6bn, €1.4bn) to UK GDP despite the hosts going out at the group stage.

Almost £1bn – £958m (US$1.4bn, €1.3bn) – of the income generated was a result of 406,000 international visitors, who spent on average £2,400 (US$3,509, €3,149) per person. Of the money spent by international visitors, £270m (US$394.8m, €354.3m) went towards accommodation, £233m (US$340.7m, €305.7m) on leisure activities, £188m (US$274.9m, €246.6m) on food and drink, £156m (US$228.1m, €204.7m) on travel and £111m (US$162.3m, €145.6m) on retail.

The tournament also created or supported 34,000 jobs according to the report.

Rugby Football Union (RFU) chief executive Ian Ritchie said the Rugby World Cup 2015 was a “celebration of rugby, which inspired the country, and the world, to play and support the game”.

“This new report reflects the Rugby World Cup’s status as one of the best-loved and most prestigious major sports events, while highlighting the significant social and economic benefits that make the tournament such an attractive low-investment, high-return hosting proposition for governments and unions alike,” added incoming World Rugby chair Bill Beaumont.

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