France to host 2018 World Rugby U20 Championship

France will host the World Rugby U20 Championship in 2018 with matches being played in Béziers, Perpignan and Narbonne.

The five match days will take place on 30 May, 3 June, 7 June, 12 June and 17 June.

The tournament features three pools of four teams, with the pool winners and the best runner-up progressing to the semi-finals.

England have been drawn in Pool B and will face Scotland, Italy and Argentina.

Holders New Zealand will face Australia, Wales and Japan in Pool A, while Pool C is made up by South Africa, France, Ireland and Georgia.

Pool matches will be played at Stade Aimé Giral in Perpignan, Stade de la Méditerranée in Béziers and the Stade d’Honneur du Parc des Sports et de l'Amitié in Narbonne. The semi-final and final venues will be announced in due course.

“The World Rugby U20 Championship is a proven finishing school for aspiring international players, with some of the biggest names in the game having graduated amongst a group of more than 550 internationals, including double World Rugby men’s 15s Player of the Year Beauden Barrett," said World Rugby Chairman Bill Beaumont.

England were beaten by New Zealand in this year's final in Georgia, having won it on home soil in Manchester during the summer of 2016.

Beaumont continued: “Following the success of Georgia, which broke all social media records, we are delighted to be heading to France and the rugby cities of Narbonne, Béziers and Perpignan. I am sure that the championship will capture the imagination and it will be fascinating to see who graduates to Rugby World Cup 2019 in Japan."

FFR President Bernard Laporte added: "We are honoured to be hosting the World Rugby U20 Championship, which plays an important role in the international development of the sport.

"It is a proven developer of young talent and players who graduate from France 2018 will go on to compete at the highest-level at future Rugby World Cups, including 2023 in France."



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