Re-elected Mori eyes 2015 World Cup

Former Japanese prime minister Yoshiro Mori was re-elected to a second two-year term as Japan Rugby Football Union (JRFU) president on Sunday, with his eyes set on hosting the 2015 World Cup.

“I want to establish a strong system for the World Cup this year. I will try to make a very careful and positive plan for hosting the 2015 World Cup,” said Mori, 69.

“We also have to improve the level of each category, including the top league and universities, and develop the sport further for young people. I’ll do my best to revive the popularity of rugby,” he added.

Japan, who have never reached the knockout round of the World Cup, made a bid to host the 2011 event against New Zealand and South Africa, but lost out to New Zealand.

In November last year, Japan declared a bid to stage the 2015 World Cup and bring the event to Asia for the first time after
learning lessons from their narrow defeat to New Zealand.

Japan made rugby history in 1995 when they were thrashed by New Zealand 145-17 – the largest ever losing margin in a World Cup – although this record was broken in 2003 when Australia demolished Namibia 142-0 at home.

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