RWC 2023 – Americas Qualifying

*Uruguay Sources Publish New RWC 2023 Americas Qualifying Process: Rugby Canada Haven’t Acknowledged Change Yet*

[ed. at the time of publication Rugby Canada haven’t acknowledged the change in qualifying process.]

A journalist from Uruguay, Ignacio Chans, creator of the Uruguay Rugby News twitter.com/RugbyNews_uy has broken the news about the 2023 RWC qualifying process for the Americas. The article, in Spanish, is here.

It’s seen as a political victory for South America Rugby (SAR) as it gives their countries more chances of qualifying for the World Cup. In RWC 2019 the winner of RAN (Rugby Americas North), Canada v USA, directly qualified as Americas 1. USA defeated Canada in the home and away series for the first time to qualify as Americas 1. Canada played the winner of South America Rugby, Uruguay, in a home and away series to determine Americas 2. That was won by Uruguay. Canada qualified through the Repechage. Argentina, due to its finish in RWC 2015 had already qualified for RWC 2019.

The new format will see RAN 1 and SAR 1 compete for the Americas 1 spot. Based on RWC 2019 results, that would have been USA v Uruguay. The article states this will be a November 2021 match, meaning the Canada v USA home and away for RAN 1 would likely take place in the summer or early fall of 2021.

The loser of RAN 1 v SAR 1 would then await the winner of RAN 2 v SAR 2 to determine Americas 2. If we take RWC 2019 results it would mean Canada as RAN 2 would have had to play a home and away with Brazil, SAR 2, before taking on Uruguay for the Americas 2 spot.

It now makes it possible for two South American countries to take the Americas 1 and 2 spots. Canada, in its current #23 ranking, potentially has the most to lose. Based on current rankings USA at #16 and Uruguay at #18 go in as favourites for Americas 1 and 2. Canada, as in RWC 2019, is looking favourites for the Repechage but now would have to get past #26 Brazil. Also in the Repechage this time will be one of #17 Spain, #19 Romania, #20 Russia, #21 Portugal. Based on Canada’s current form, it’s going to be the toughest RWC qualifying process for Canada’s men’s XVs program in its history.

Further updates when Rugby Canada makes the announcement official.

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