South Africa's hopes of staging the 2023 Rugby World Cup received a shot in the arm after the government decided to lift the ban on hosting major sports events.
The ban was imposed on rugby union, cricket, athletics and netball after the government claimed that the sports bodies failed to reach the diversity targets that encourages more opportunities for black players and administrators. Even though, the other three sports has made satisfactory progress towards the target, the ban on athletics will remain after it failed to meet the standards.
Along with South Africa, France and Ireland are in the race to host the 2023 edition of the World Cup and the final choice will be announced by World Rugby in November.
"This is great news and a tribute to the work that the sport has been doing in recent years to stay in tune and relevant to modern South Africa," SA Rugby president Mark Alexander told www.sarugby.net.
"We can now put the finishing touches to what we believe will be an outstanding bid to host the 2023 Rugby World Cup."
The last time South Africa hosted a World Cup was in 1995 where they emerged champions after defeating New Zealand in the final.