Ireland's Rugby World Cup Oversight Board Bid Director Kevin Potts believes that the timing could not have been better for the visit of the World Rugby Technical Review Group.
The Review Group were in Ireland last weekend assess the credibility of the tournament's prospective hosts, and were not only here for St Patrick’s Day, but also got to witness Ireland’s stirring 13-9 Six Nations victory over England.
Speaking to RTÉ 2fm's Game On, Potts revealed that he was very pleased with how the review went as Ireland stepped up their bidding process against rivals France and South Africa.
“We have been determined since the outset that Ireland would deliver a world class and compelling bid and that’s exactly what we’re doing,” he said.
“We’re working very hard with the stakeholders across the island, North and South to deliver that.
“We were very pleased with the way the week went with Rugby World Cup. I think they’ve gone away from Ireland with a very positive impression of our bid and I think they’re looking forward to receiving it.
“It was nice to start the week on a high and certainly when you’re able to look at the atmosphere the crowd in the stadium generated against England it helps.
“I don’t think we need to convince Rugby World Cup or anyone associated about the atmosphere and the enthusiasm that Irish fans have for rugby or sports in general.
“It’s a big feature of our messaging in fact and the enthusiasm that Irish people will bring to this tournament.”
"What’s unique about our stadiums is that they’re all in the heart of our towns and cities"
Potts believes that the location of the stadia to be used in the tournament also gives Ireland an edge.
Croke Park, Aviva Stadium, Páirc Uí Chaoimh, Thomond Park and the RDS are all among the venues that would be used to host games and all are in a central location.
“I think we offer a tournament like no other full of Irish spirit. What’s unique about our stadiums is that they’re all in the heart of our towns and cities.
“When you go to other locations around the world, you can be on the train for an hour and go to a stadium and if you’re lucky you get back to the city centre in two hours.
“Our proposition is that when fans arrive in the cities they can walk to our stadiums which means they can enjoy an amazing atmosphere prior to the game and after the game and that is unique to the proposition we’re putting forward.
“In addition the range of stadiums we have in terms of size, including up to 82,300 in Croke Park, means our stadiums are a feature of our proposition.
“Add to that the hospitality and the warmth and the tourism infrastructure that Ireland has, we think we can offer something unique to the 450,000 fans that would travel for the World Cup.
“The stadiums are fantastic. There will be investment required to bring them up to world class standard as you’d expect, but we also have amazing tourism infrastructure.”