By Tadhg Peavoy
The GAA’s Central Council will ask the 2013 Congress to allow six GAA stadiums to be used for a Rugby World Cup bid by the IRFU.
At the council’s meeting today, it was agreed that six GAA stadiums would be needed for a proposed bid for the 2023 or 2027 competition.
By the council stating their intent, the IRFU can further explore the possibility of tabling a bid for the tournament.
The IRFU has also confirmed that it has had preliminary discussions with the GAA regarding the availability of GAA grounds for a bid for the 2023 RWC.
Irish rugby's governing body has also acknowledged that a bid for international Test rugby's showpiece event would be dependent on support from the Government and GAA.
The number of stadiums needed to host the event has not yet been finalised. The 2011 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand used 12 stadiums, as will the 2015 Rugby World Cup in England.
The 2019 Rugby World Cup plans to use 11 stadiums, with two in foreign territories, one in Singapore and one in Hong Kong.
IRFU chief executive Philip Browne said: “The Rugby World Cup in New Zealand showed what a country of four million people could achieve in terms of attracting visitors and showcasing the potential of a country, so an overall Ireland bid is something that the government was keen to discuss with us.
“I think everybody is aware of the benefits from both a social and economic perspective that would come from hosting the third largest sporting event on the globe.
"We are at the early stages of examining the feasibility of a bid and part of this study is to determine the interest and support of Government and other relevant bodies.”
The Council also discussed amateur status within Gaelic Games and the possible introduction of Hawk-Eye.
Regarding payments to managers, the established means of vouched expenses and standard mileage will continue. The council also reinforced that these methods of payment must be observed by every county.
In order to enable a transparency to these procedures, the council has suggested that each county records and discloses their statements.
Further to this, the council has proposed to establish a register of team managers, selectors, mentors and advisors for each Gaelic games discipline.
The register will encompass details about the individuals role and payments within the county. The amount of training sessions per year will also be included with the hope of ascertaining the costs incurred for the duration of the season.
The key point to this proposal is that counties will not be eligible to receive funding until they return a management register.
It was revealed that testing of Hawk-Eye is taking longer than expected, with instances where Hawk-Eye has had to provide a refinement to the system when taking into account, amongst other things, wobbling posts, strong sunlight and shots hit higher than 8m above the top of the posts.
The system has been installed, and is being tested, in Croke Park.
Hawk-Eye believe that further testing is needed; however, it is believed the system will be ready shortly. At present the system is working at 98% accuracy,