The Lensbury to host South African & New Zealand Rugby World Cup teams
By Teddington People | Tuesday, August 26, 2014, 09:41
It was confirmed this morning that the South African and New Zealand rugby teams will be based at St Mary's University and the Lensbury in Teddington during the Rugby World Cup, taking place in England and in Cardiff between September 18 and October 31 next year.
Team bases, chosen using an open tender process, will consist of an outdoor pitch, indoor training facility, a swimming pool, gym and hotel and will be used by the competing teams in the lead up to and during the six week event. The facilities needed to meet stringent requirements as well as being within easy reach of match venues.
The Lensbury and St Mary’s, which made a final list of 41 official venues and chosen from 90 bids, worked closely with England Rugby 2015 in the run up to confirmation of their combined status as an official Team Base for Rugby World Cup 2015.
The Lensbury General Manager, Ivor Turner said: “We are so pleased with our partners St Mary’s and to be able to work together again as we did in the Olympics, where we hosted the Irish team. The Lensbury has historical links with rugby, hosting top international teams for over 36 years and we are proud that we can bring elite teams to Teddington and Twickenham so the local community can benefit from this major event.
“We have been the base for the RFU Sevens for many years and are proud to be associated with them. This is a dream come true for the team at The Lensbury to have the honour of hosting the teams, showcase our great elite sports facilities and work once again with our neighbours, St Mary’s University.”
St Mary’s Director for Sport Andrew Reid-Smith said, “St Mary's University, working with our partners the Lensbury, are excited to be the Team Base for New Zealand and South Africa during the Rugby World Cup 2015 and to have been selected to host teams during the knock out phase.
“International rugby squads have previously used our world-class sports facilities and we were a Pre-Games Training Camp for London 2012. St Mary's has the best endurance running programme in the country and our experience of training camps and understanding of elite athletes will help us provide the environment that each team will require.
“With our campus located in Twickenham, it is particularly special to be involved in the Rugby World Cup 2015 and to be supporting New Zealand and South Africa is fantastic. I'm sure this will make our students, staff and local community feel even more involved in what will be an incredible tournament of rugby.”
New Zealand manager Darren Shand said, "The All Blacks are looking forward to coming to England and Wales next year for Rugby World Cup 2015. We will be based in London, Cardiff and County Durham at the Tournament and, while preparing for our Test matches will be key, we are also looking forward to experiencing the local culture in each of the areas."