Wigan Borough is celebrating after the Rugby Football League (RFL) confirmed that the Borough will host matches during the 2013 Rugby League World Cup.
After submitting a strong bid, Wigan Borough beat off stiff competition from rival applications across the country to stage matches in the 14-nation tournament in two year's time.
Leader of Wigan Council Lord Peter Smith says: "This is fantastic news for our borough. Wigan Borough has a proud tradition of excellence when it comes to Rugby League and it is wonderful news that the borough will be one of the host for this prestigious event."
Lord Smith adds: "Our Back the Bid campaign to be a host venue really caught the imagination of a great many people in our borough. We have been supported by both our professional clubs, the amateur network, the business community and by rugby fans.
"Not only do we see this as a homecoming for rugby but we will also be making sure that hosting the matches provides us with a legacy to help develop the game and encourage more young people to take part.
"We are also keen to capitalise on the economic benefits that being a host venue will surely bring."
2013 Rugby League World Cup Tournament Director Nigel Wood said: "I would like to congratulate the Wigan Borough team who have been successful in its bid to host matches in what I am confident will be a World Cup that enhances the UK's golden decade of sport.
"We experienced massive interest in hosting matches from all across Europe and the bidding process proved to be hugely competitive.
"In putting together their bid over the last 12 months, Wigan has demonstrated a level of commitment that gives us confidence that the 2013 Rugby League World Cup will exceed everyone's expectations.
"It has been a fantastic and inspiring bidding process and we have been extremely impressed with the quality, detail and diverse nature of the host bids received."
Wigan Warriors Chairman and Owner Ian Lenagan added: "I am delighted that Wigan - home of the 2010 Super League Champions and 2011 Challenge Cup Winners - will be hosting games during the 2013 Rugby League World Cup.
"Rugby League is an integral part of life in Wigan; at school level, in amateur clubs and in the professional game and this success in attracting significant games to the Borough is synonymous of a new Wigan where all elements of the Community are coming together under the leadership of the Wigan Forward Board and Wigan Council.
"I would like to thank and congratulate all of the Stakeholders for preparing the successful Bid with special mention to Dave Whelan and Simon Toon for allowing the use of the DW Stadium and Leigh Sports Village."
Yesterday's announcement outlines 18 different venues which will stage matches and reveals six other venues which will host teams during the tournament. Details of host fixtures and venues for the opening ceremony, the semi-finals and the final will be confirmed early in the New Year. A total of 34 bids, comprising 30 stadia, 47 team training sites and 87 team base camps, were submitted to the RFL. Each of the bidding hosts underwent a detailed inspection from a 2013 team to examine the various sites venue specifications, as well as evaluating the enthusiasm and commitment of each bidding host. Upwards of half a million people are expected to watch the 28 matches live over a six-week period in the autumn of 2013 with a further 20 million viewers from 120 countries tuning in around the world.