Factbox: Women's Rugby World Cup

Rugby Union - Women's International - England v New Zealand - Sandy Park, Exeter, Britain - October 31, 2021 England's Zoe Harrison converts a try Action Images via Reuters/Matthew Childs

Oct 5 (Reuters) - Factbox on the women's Rugby World Cup, which takes place in New Zealand from Oct. 8 to Nov. 12:

* The ninth women's World Cup, the first in the southern hemisphere, was scheduled to take place in 2021 but delayed for a year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

* The tournament will open with a triple header at the 50,000-seater Eden Park in Auckland on Saturday. Matches will also take place at Waitakere Stadium (3,000) in the Auckland suburbs and the Northland Events Centre (30,000) in Whangarei some 160 km to the north.

* Hosts New Zealand are also the defending champions, having beaten England 41-32 in the final of the last World Cup in Dublin five years ago to win their fifth title (1998, 2002, 2006, 2010, 2017).

* The United States (1991) and England (1994, 2014) are the other teams to have won the title.

* England top the world rankings going into the tournament on the back of a 25-match winning streak that has taken in three Six Nations triumphs.

* The 12 teams have been split into three pools for the opening round, with the top two from each progressing along with the two best third-placed finishers.

Pool A: New Zealand, Australia, Wales, Scotland

Pool B: Canada, United States, Italy, Japan

Pool C: England, France, South Africa, Fiji

* Teams will be awarded four points for a win and two points for a draw. Bonus points will be awarded for scoring four or more tries in a game and/or for losing by fewer than eight points.

* The tournament will have quarter-finals for the first time with the fixtures determined by the seeding of the eight teams based on the results in the group stage. The pool winners will be seeds 1 to 3, the second placed teams 4 to 6, the third place teams 7 and 8.

Quarter finals: 1 v 8, 2 v 7, 3 v 6, 4 v 5

Semi-finals: Winner of 1 v 8 takes on winner of 4 v 5

Winner of 2 v 7 takes on winner of 3 v 6

* In the case of a points tie in the group standings or seedings, the higher team will be determined by the following criteria:

1. Matches between the tied teams

2. Points difference

3. Tries difference

4. Points scored

5. Most tries scored

6. Highest World Rugby ranking

Compiled by Nick Mulvenney, editing by Peter Rutherford

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