DUBAI: The Webb Ellis Cup has touched down in Paris with Emirates, kick starting the 100-day countdown to Rugby World Cup 2023 (RWC 2023). Set to take place from 8 September to 28 October 2023 in ten host cities across France – Rugby World Cup is one of the world’s biggest and popular events inspiring millions of fans worldwide. As the Official Airline and Worldwide Partner, Emirates transported the trophy yesterday on-board its iconic A380 with bespoke RWC 2023 livery.
On touchdown in the host country, South African rugby legend, Tendai Mtawarira who was part of the winning team at Rugby World Cup 2019, handed over the Webb Ellis Cup to Jacques Rivoal, President of the France 2023 Organising Committee, in presence of Sir Bill Beaumont, World Rugby Chairman and Cedric Renard, Emirates Country Manager in France.
Boutros Boutros, Emirates’ Divisional Senior Vice President, Corporate Communications, Marketing and Brand, said: “As the Official Airline and Worldwide Partner of Rugby World Cup 2023 – we are very proud to pass the coveted Webb Ellis Cup to the host nation and officially kick start the countdown to one of the most followed and anticipated rugby tournaments in the world. Emirates has been a staunch supporter of rugby since 2007 and our commitment to the sport continues to grow on and off the field. Rugby truly brings communities together and we look forward to connecting with fans from all over the world. Let the countdown begin!”
Emirates’ sponsorship of Rugby World Cup 2023
Emirates also announced details of its sponsorship of RWC 2023, including sponsorship of the Emirates Match Officials. With Emirates’ support, World Rugby will continue to invest in the development and support of the world’s top match officials, central to the sport’s values of respect and discipline. The world’s best referees will take the field in their Emirates Fly Better Macron kit when officiating in test rugby, continuing a long tradition started back in 2013.
Following the success of the award-winning ‘Whistle Watch’, a World Rugby content series presented by former international referee Nigel Owens and sponsored by Emirates, the two partners will continue to create innovative content to immerse fans into the world of match officials and inspire young referees to pick up the whistle, while making rugby’s laws more accessible.
Watch the action live with Skywards Exclusives
Emirates Skywards members can redeem or bid Miles on Skywards Exclusives for a chance to watch the world’s top 20 rugby teams battle it out to win the Webb Ellis Cup.
Starting from 10,000 Miles, members can purchase General Admission tickets to watch matches taking place across the country including Paris, Nice and Lyon. Members can also join a bid starting at 90,000 Miles for a pair of General Admission tickets to watch the Rugby World Cup 2023 opening ceremony, followed by the France versus New Zealand match at Stade de France (Saint-Denis) on 8 September.
More than 15 years of partnership
Emirates’ long-standing partnership with World Rugby traces back to 2007 when the airline first sponsored Rugby World Cup 2007 in France as a Tournament Sponsor. The airline then became a Worldwide Partner for Rugby World Cup 2011 in New Zealand; the first Worldwide Partner to sign an agreement for both England 2015 and Japan 2019 in Japan; and currently, Worldwide Partner for Rugby World Cup France 2023; and Rugby World Cup Australia 2027.
Serving France since 1992
Emirates has been serving France for more than 30 years. The airline currently serves the country with three daily A380 flights to Paris, daily flights to Lyon, and daily A380 flights to Nice (starting from 1 June). The airline’s extensive network of 140 destinations offers French customers access to an array of onward connections to Asia, the Indian Ocean, the Middle East, Africa and Australasia.
Passengers won’t miss a moment of excitement on-board Emirates as rugby matches will be aired live on Sport 24 and across dedicated Emirates airport lounges around the world. The airline’s award-winning inflight entertainment system, ice, has topped “best in sky” awards for 17 consecutive years, including “Passenger Choice Award for Best Global Entertainment’ at APEX 2023 and ‘World’s Best Inflight Entertainment’ at Skytrax 2022.
Emirates customers will also enjoy the airline’s gourmet meals and premium beverage selection, including 37 different varieties of French wines and champagnes, including Dom Pérignon, as well as an enticing Spirits menu on board. Emirates has invested more than $1 billion into its wine program and the Emirates Wine Cellar is in France currently houses 6.2 million bottles of fine wines.