The world media have praised New Zealand's hosting of the Rugby World Cup.

After six weeks and 48 matches, New Zealand's hosting duties of one of the biggest sporting events in the world ended on Sunday with All Black captain Richie McCaw lifting the William Webb Ellis trophy.

International Rugby Board chairman Bernard Lapasset yesterday said the event will be "remembered as one of the great Rugby World Cups, an exceptional tournament".

International media agreed with those sentiments.


Robert Kitson of the Guardian says that New Zealand 'nailed it'.

"Staging a memorable Rugby World Cup, as England will discover in 2015, is only partially about the sport. The Kiwis embraced this crucial detail and clung tightly to it. The tournament will be favourably remembered long after the precise details of the All Blacks's narrow victory fade to grey," he wrote.

"In the end, though, the secret was national fervour. From Southland to the Bay of Islands, the collective desire to show off New Zealand's multiple attractions made fools of those fearing a parochial non-event."

Kitson also named four All Blacks (Israel Dagg, Cory Jane, Conrad Smith and Owen Franks) in his team of the tournament and said Dagg "did not look a complete world-beater in the final but you suspect he soon will be".

The Telegraph's Paul Ackford noted Rugby World Cup 2011 CEO Martin Snedden as one of his heroes of the tournament, alongside Argentina's Felipe Contepomi, Namibia's Jacques Burger and All Black skipper Richie McCaw, for delivering "a spectacular tournament" despite the consequences of the Christchurch earthquake.

Ackford said the best things of the tournament were the unpaid volunteers, the atmosphere at smaller venues, the campaign for locals to adopt a second team and "the range of weather and pitch conditions which makes it such a true rugby test".

Amongst the worst things of the tournament he added the mexican waves and Auckland's transport woes on the opening night. colunmist Graham Jenkins said the controversial decision to award the hosting rights to New Zealand in 2005 was a calculated gamble "but one that has paid off and will continue to do so in the years ahead".

"The successful staging of Rugby World Cup 2011 is a stunning achievement in the face of adversity and a tribute to not only the organisers but each and every community and individual who has served the sport and their country so well. Suddenly the question on everyone's lips is not why was the tournament awarded to New Zealand, but when can we come again?"

The Sydney Morning Herald's Greg Growden says many jumped the gun by "proclaiming within days of the start of the tournament that this was the best World Cup ever".

"Yes, it was tremendous being in a country where the World Cup was the focus, but too many New Zealanders, eager to prove they are a heavy-hitter, forgot there have previously been outstanding tournaments," he wrote.

"I would put New Zealand 2011 on the same level as South Africa 1995 and Australia 2003, but not above."

Growden praised the volunteers but said the endless booing of Wallabies first five-eighth Quade Cooper throughout the World Cup was juvenile.

On whether New Zealand can host another World Cup, due to the financial failures of the tournament he said it may be some:

"Countless other countries can bring in far more revenue for the commercially-focused IRB, and so it could be at least another 24 years before the world's most obsessed rugby nation is even considered an outside chance of having another World Cup in their own backyard. Sad, but true."

The Daily Mail's rugby experts added their take on the World Cup with the only suggestions for improvement being aimed at the IRB rather than New Zealand's hosting abilities.

Rugby writer Chris Foy said the scheduling was the key issue to come out of the tournament.

"Make a commitment to involving all nations equally in midweek matches, whatever the impact on TV viewing figures. The likes of Samoa deserve a level playing field," he wrote.