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Junior World Cup tickets for 2013 in France on sale now

irb.com and James Mortimer     09 Feb 2013    

Last year the New Zealand Under-20 suffered their first loss in four campaigns with a shock 9-6 defeat to Wales.

They recovered to reach the final, but were beaten by hosts South Africa.

The Fédération Française de Rugby (FFR) has announced that almost 50,000 tickets for the pool matches can be purchased from Friday, February 8.

Fans can go to www.ffr.fr to view the prices and categories for each of the three stadiums that will host matches during the Championship. Tickets for the final two match days – June 18 and 23 – will go on sale at a later date.

Excitement is building ahead of this year's IRB Junior World Championship which takes place in Vannes, Nantes and La Roche-sur-Yon.

The premier age-grade tournament broke attendance and broadcasting records in 2012, when 35,000 people attended the final at Newlands Stadium in Cape Town to see hosts South Africa beat New Zealand in a thrilling final that was watched in 165 countries around the world.

IRB Tournament Director Philippe Bourdarias says today's announcement means preparations for the event will now step up a gear.

"This is shaping up to be a marvellous event in the north west of France in June. Fans know that they will see open, fast rugby played by the 12 best teams in the world, and that it will feature players that have the ability to become the future stars of world Rugby," said Bourdarias.

"I expect tickets to sell very quickly, as the north west of France now has a massive appetite for Rugby."

The pool stages have thrown up some mouth-watering matches for fans. The draw was based on final standings from the 2012 Championship and hosts France, courtesy of their sixth-place finish, will face defending champions South Africa, England and IRB Junior World Rugby Trophy 2012 winners USA in Pool A.

JWC 2012 runners-up New Zealand, Ireland, Australia and Fiji are in Pool B, while Wales, Argentina, Scotland and Samoa make up Pool C.

France aims to stamp its own mark on hosting the Championship with the venues set to showcase Rugby to northern France, while a legacy programme will aim to grow participation within the region. The opening match for the hosts will be against England on June 5 in La Roche-sur-Yon.

Since the IRB Junior World Championship started in 2008, more than 180 players have graduated to full Test honours with their respective countries, 80 of these making the step up in 2012.