Incredible packages for the upcoming Rugby World Cup are on offer for Home Nations fans. In partnership with Sportsbreaks.com
Experience Rugby World Cup France 2023 with Sportsbreaks.com
“Oui!” comes the hearty response from Mark Cueto when asked if he speaks any French, before adding, “Well, I can order a coffee and I can order a beer…”
Having made flying visits across the Channel on European duty with Sale Sharks, the 55-cap England wing first played France in their backyard in 2006. A year later, he’d spend the best part of ten weeks there as England went all the way to the Rugby World Cup 2007 final. In that time they went round the compass, playing in Marseille in the South, Nantes in the West and Lens in the North, as well as in the capital.
Rugby World Cup returns to France in 2023 and the rugby roadshow will pass through Bordeaux, Lille, Lyon, Marseille, Nantes, Nice, Saint-Étienne, Toulouse and, of course, Paris.
Matches will take place between 8 September and 28 October, when the final erupts into Paris, and there is scope to squeeze in so many other memorable moments during that time, with Sportsbreaks.com leading expert-crafted packages that not only include accommodation and tickets but official RWC 2023 merchandise too.
Sportsbreaks.com Brand Ambassador Cueto (above) explains that touring France is exceptional. “I grew to love the place,” he says. “I didn’t enjoy France as a kid. But as you get older, you appreciate different things – culture, architecture, the history and that side of France.
“In 2007, France did such a brilliant job hosting Rugby World Cup. I remember getting on the TGV trains – you can get from the North to the South in less than two hours or something ridiculous. The network for fans is one of the reasons France is such a successful place to hold a competition like Rugby World Cup.”
Cueto casts his mind back to a time when his nearest and dearest could jet out for England’s pool games and see him in action, explaining that “one of the great things about a Rugby World Cup in France is it’s so accessible”.
And then, of course, there’s the rugby. “I think there’s a bit more of a tribal vibe with rugby in France. It’s a bit more like the football vibe in England. Fans are very passionate, very loud and the big clubs are located in real rugby regions.
“Playing in 2007 was just a massive roller coaster for me,” Cueto adds, recalling his first ever Rugby World Cup, contending with injury for the first time in his career as an unfancied England defied the narrative. By the time they got to the final, “Paris was carnage – but the good kind of carnage.” And of course there’s the try that wasn’t.
“I don’t really remember the drive to the stadium but obviously my most vivid memory is the ‘try’ (Cueto’s score was disallowed as he slid for the line). That two minutes of going to the Television Match Official felt like two hours.
“I believe if that was given we’d go on to win the game, but who knows. It was an absolutely crazy, crazy few months!”
South Africa won the final 15-6. But Cueto knows all about memories made in France lasting a lifetime. “About a month after Rugby World Cup 2007, I was in Altrincham, filling my car up at a petrol station. A white van drove past, honking the horn. Three lads in there were shouting: ‘Cueto! Cueto! It was a f****** try!’
“I have never really been criticised for it, and to this day it gets brought up daily.”
Memories made in France can have an incredible legacy. You’ll want to be there when new ones are forged.
FIND OUT MORE
Book a Sportsbreaks.com Match Break and you’ll get:
- Official Rugby World Cup 2023 match tickets
- A minimum of two nights’ accommodation at one of their great-value hotels
- Event pack containing essential RWC 2023 merchandise
- 24-hour Sportsbreaks.com representation service!
And for a little bit extra, you can:
- Upgrade your Official Rugby World Cup 2023 match tickets
- Extend your stay at one of their great-value hotels
- Enhance your RWC 2023 experience with any club (or match) specific packages/events that become available. They’ll let you know as and when any optional extras are available to book, offering information on how you can add these to your trip.
Find out more of the details at
Can’t get to the shops? You can download the digital edition of Rugby World straight to your tablet or subscribe to the print edition to get the magazine delivered to your door.
Follow Rugby World on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.