Rugby World Cup Organisers Apologise For Crowd Problems, Botched Anthems

Marseille, France (AFP) – Rugby World Cup organizers issued a heartfelt apology to the thousands of fans who faced difficulties gaining entry to the Marseille stadium because of crowd problems and those who encountered delays traveling to the Bordeaux arena. They have committed to addressing concerns regarding the rendition of national anthems during the matches, with a planned update set for Wednesday. Discover Rugby World Cup Organisers Apologise For Crowd Problems, Botched Anthems.

The Rugby World Cup pool D clash between England and Argentina in Marseille kicked off on Saturday, with many empty seats due to supporters waiting outside the stadium. In Bordeaux, tramway issues caused delays for fans heading to the Ireland vs. Namibia game.


France 2023 president Jacques Rivoal expressed his sincere apologies during a press conference, acknowledging the responsibility for the issues. Tournament director Michel Pousseau also emphasized their confidence in resolving these challenges. “We will not rest on our laurels. Our goal is to provide the best experience for our fans. We understand the frustration of those who couldn’t reach the stadiums in Bordeaux and Marseille on time.”

Also Read: Where to Watch Rugby World Cup 2023 in Europe for Free

Julien Collette, France 2023 director general, revealed plans to reassign volunteers to assist fans in reaching the stadiums, a practice already implemented in Marseille. This effort aligns with the upcoming Summer Olympics in Paris in 2024, with government services fully engaged to support their initiatives.

Despite a record-breaking 15.4 million viewers on French TV channel TF1 for the opening match between France and New Zealand, the rendition of national anthems left both TV viewers and stadium attendees bewildered and, in some cases, displeased.

Rugby World Cup Positive Reactions From The Crowd to The Revised Anthem

A children’s choir performed the anthems in a canon style, resulting in an almost inaudible cacophony as fans attempted to sing along. Organizers have taken note of the feedback and have presented a revised version, removing the canon aspect from the children’s choir, which has received positive reactions.

Rivoal stated, “Our traditional fans were taken aback and disoriented since they were accustomed to different renditions of the national anthems. We have now introduced simplified versions while retaining the presence of children’s voices.”

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