March 4- England Rugby 2015 have announced that Sandy Park, home of Aviva Premiership team Exeter Chiefs, has been added to the shortlist of venues for the 2015 World Cup, replacing Bristol City's Ashton Gate, which is set to be redeveloped.
Sandy Park meets all of the Rugby World Cup 2015 minimum standards criteria, including playing facilities, pitch size, commercial considerations and the support of the local authority.
In addition, the Stadium, which was opened in 2006, will have an increased capacity of 20,600 by 2015.
"We are very pleased to add Sandy Park to the long list of potential match venues for Rugby World Cup 2015." said Debbie Jevans, England Rugby 2015 chief executive.
"We want to ensure that Rugby World Cup 2015 is a truly national event, and Sandy Park, located in the rugby heartland of the South West, gives us the option to take the tournament as far and wide as possible.
"We are finalising venues and the match schedule in conjunction with Rugby World Cup Limited and will publish the final list in the next few weeks."
A supposed final list of venues was leaked in the British press over the weekend, but it has been shrugged off by Rugby World Cup 2015.
A spokesperson for the organisers of the 2015 World Cup said: "That list is not at all true."
"It is entirely speculation,"
The "leaked final list" suggests that 75 per cent of venues are football grounds, and states that Twickenham will host eight games, including the final, with Cardiff's Millenium Stadium down to hold eight games and Wembley Stadium to hold six.
Gloucester Rugby's Kingsholm is the only club rugby stadium on the "list", with Leicester City Football Club's King Power Stadium, Brighton & Hove Albion FC's American Express Community Stadium and Milton Keynes Dons FC's stadium:mk also present.
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October 2012: Olympic Stadium shortlisted for England 2015 Rugby World Cup