World Rugby has welcomed the confirmation by the International Olympic Committee’s Executive Board of the venue location for rugby at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.
The sport will be played at Tokyo Stadium, which has previously staged several big rugby matches, including university championship fixtures and Top League games. The 45,000-seater stadium is centrally located, enjoys excellent transport links and is well-known to generate the sort of electric atmosphere that has become the hall-mark of top-class international rugby sevens in recent years.
World Rugby President Bernard Lapasset said: “We welcome this exciting news and look forward to delivering exciting and successful men’s and women’s rugby sevens events in partnership with Tokyo 2020 that are great for the Olympic Games and great for rugby.
“Rugby returns to the Olympic Games summer programme next year in Rio de Janeiro for the first time in 92 years and we expect that the sevens event will add significantly to the entertainment value and excitement of Rio 2016. We are really looking forward to showcasing our exciting sport on the biggest sporting stage of all.”
This decision forms part of the second set of venues confirmed by the IOC for Tokyo 2020 following the confirmation of 17 sports in their original bid locations and the previous agreement to move three venues. The total number of sports whose venues are now confirmed is 26 and these two IOC decisions have resulted in approximately US$1.7 billion in savings from the revised Tokyo 2020 construction budget.
The venue master plan review has been carried out by Tokyo 2020 and the international federations in the spirit of Olympic Agenda 2020, which encourages host cities to use existing and temporary venues where possible in order to reduce costs, and following Tokyo 2020’s “athletes first” concept.
The approved venue moves make sure that the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Village remains at the heart of the Olympic Games in both spirit and geography, giving the athletes a great experience, while reducing venue costs and engaging the whole population of Tokyo and surrounding areas.