Qatar Eyes Hosting Rights for Rugby Nations Championship Finals

The Gulf nation of Qatar is in prime position to stage a "Super Bowl of Rugby" every two years, starting in 2026.

Rugby fans, buckle up! Qatar is making a serious bid to host the finals of the highly anticipated Nations Championship, dubbed the "Super Bowl of Rugby." This new tournament, kicking off in 2026, will see the best of the best – the Six Nations teams battling it out against their southern hemisphere rivals, SANZAAR nations.

Reports suggest Qatar's Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy has secured a two-month exclusivity period to negotiate a hefty eight-year deal. Their vision? A three-day rugby extravaganza held every two years in Doha, starting in November 2026.

What's on the Table?

Qatar's proposal is ambitious. They envision hosting six thrilling matches, featuring all 12 tier-one nations. The format would see double-headers played across three days in various Doha stadiums, culminating in a championship decider at the iconic Lusail Stadium – the same venue that witnessed the 2022 FIFA World Cup final.

Lusail Stadium Qatar bidding for Rugby Nations Championship final

Why Qatar?

The Gulf nation is no stranger to hosting major sporting events. Their infrastructure and experience in managing large-scale tournaments are undeniable. Qatar likely sees the Nations Championship as a strategic move, further boosting their global sporting profile.

Beyond Qatar: Brands Vie for a Piece of the Action

While Qatar is the frontrunner for hosting duties, the spotlight isn't exclusive. Major brands are expected to jostle for lucrative sponsorship opportunities. From kit manufacturers like Adidas, Macron and Canterbury to global giants like Qatar Airways and Heineken, the Nations Championship promises a goldmine for those looking to tap into a passionate international rugby audience

What's Next?

While Qatar seems to be the frontrunner, negotiations are still ongoing. With a potential financial windfall of up to £800 million over the first four editions, this is a significant decision for Six Nations Rugby and SANZAAR.

A New Era for Rugby?

The Nations Championship holds immense promise, and Qatar's potential involvement adds another layer of intrigue. This "Super Bowl" concept could be a game-changer, injecting a fresh dose of excitement into the international rugby calendar.

Will Qatar secure the hosting rights? Only time will tell. But one thing's for sure, the future of international rugby is going to look very different from 2026!


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