South Africa won the 2019 Rugby World Cup

London (AFP) - The Rugby World Cup will be staged in the United States for the first time in 2031 after officials announced the host nations for a number of men’s and women’s tournaments on Thursday.

The 2027 event will take place in Australia, with women’s tournaments going to England (2025), Australia (2029) and the United States (2033).

By taking the World Cup to North America, officials hope to grow the sport in a non-traditional rugby nation.

“Today, we have approved three exceptional Rugby World Cup host nations – England, Australia and USA – providing unprecedented certainty and an unparallelled opportunity to accelerate the growth and impact of rugby globally,” said World Rugby chairman Bill Beaumont.

“It is great for rugby, for fans and for the host nations.”

USA Rugby chief executive Ross Young said: “We look forward to partnering with World Rugby in the years ahead to ensure that our preparations for these tournaments and the events themselves are a paradigm-shifting catalyst for the growth of our sport, not only here in the United States but around the world.”