Wales face a tough opening pool game against South Africa in the 2011 World Cup to be staged in New Zealand.
Wales will kick off their 2011 World Cup campaign against reigning champions South Africa at Wellington's Regional Stadium on Sunday September 11.
Warren Gatland's men have also been drawn in Pool D alongside Fiji and two sides yet to be confirmed, one from Oceania and one from Africa.
The tournament will kick of on Friday, September 9 with hosts New Zealand taking on the surprise packet from the last tournament, Tonga.
The 48 tournament matches are scheduled across 13 venues in 13 cities: Auckland, North Shore, Whangarei, Hamilton, Rotorua, New Plymouth, Napier, Palmerston North, Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch, Dunedin, and Invercargill.
Rugby World Cup (RWCL) Chairman, Bernard Lapasset, said: "The sporting world is awaiting with great excitement the next chapter in Rugby World Cup history and we are delighted that New Zealand, a country so rich in Rugby heritage and tradition, is the host of Rugby World Cup 2011."
"A lot of work and collaboration has gone into the match schedule and the selection of match venues. This has included input from the IRB, Rugby New Zealand 2011 and the cities and regions of New Zealand. The RWCL Board is very happy with the outcome and believes this is the best balanced schedule we have seen for a Rugby World Cup in terms of benefitting player welfare."
Speaking at the announcement in Auckland, RWCL Managing Director Mike Miller said: "While the number of match venues is more than Australia 2003 and France 2007 it reflects the Organising Committee's desire to take the tournament to the entire nation under its call to arms of a Stadium of Four Million People philosophy. RWCL fully supports this and the desire to ensure the tournament has a unique Look and Feel that fits in with the cultural background of the nation."
RNZ 2011 Chief Executive Martin Snedden said: "We believe today's announcement builds on the knockout venue decisions announced last year and takes us further towards the fulfilment of our promise that the tournament will touch the whole of New Zealand."
"Rugby World Cup is much more than a series of 48 rugby matches. It will be an international festival across New Zealand quite unlike the country has even seen and will attract up to 60,000 international visitors," added Mr Snedden.
The two venues and the quarter-final matches they will host have also been confirmed. Wellington will host Quarter-final 1 (winner Pool C versus runner-up Pool D) and Quarter-final 3 (winner Pool D versus runner-up Pool C) while Christchurch will host Quarter-final 2 (winner Pool B versus runner-up Pool A) and Quarter-final 4 (winner Pool A versus runner-up Pool B). Auckland will host both semi-finals.
In addition, the dates for the final weekend, which coincides with Labour Day, were also confirmed with the Bronze Final to take place on Friday October 21 at Eden Park, followed by the Final on Sunday October 23 at the same venue.
Pool A New Zealand; France; Tonga; Americas 1; Asia 1
Pool B Argentina; England; Scotland; Europe 1; Play-off winner
Pool C Australia; Ireland; Italy; Europe 2; Americas 2 Pool D South Africa; Wales; Fiji; Oceania 1; Africa 1
The Half a Game initiative is currently sweeping across Wales and proving a major success. The scheme aims to give every young player at least half a game every weekend. WRU TV recently visited a festival in Narberth where clubs have fully embraced the initiative.
Both Bargoed and Swansea were seeking their first win of the Principality Premiership season this afternoon. It proved a fruitful day for the hosts - not only did they win, but Bargoed claimed a try bonus point.
Cardiff managed to keep their unbeaten record at home intact, but only just as Bridgend made them work extremely hard before the Blue and Blacks secured a hard fought Principality Premiership win at the BT Sport Arms Park last night.
Former Wales back row Andy Powell gives a guided tour of The Wern, home of Merthyr RFC, who are determined to prove a lot of people wrong and make their mark in their first season in the Principality Premiership.
Wales Sevens head coach Gareth Williams looks back on the Rio Sevens success where he helped GB win silver. He believes the successful campaign is a huge boost to his Welsh squad as they prepare for another World Series, as WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie discovers
British and Irish Lions head coach Warren Gatland will be heading back home to take on the All Blacks next year where for him, success for 2017 is all about going to New Zealand and winning a Test Series.
Last week all roads led to Eugene Cross Park where defending champions Ebbw Vale hosted this season's launch of the Principality Premiership. WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie was there to capture the thoughts of Damien Hudd, captain of Ebbw Vale, and WRU Head of Performance, Geraint John.
Llandovery made it three in a row when they defeated Aberavon in the final of the National Foster's 7s at BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park on Sunday. On another eventful day of sevens, Newport claimed the Plate and the Dragons won the women's crown
Last week saw Cardiff welcome players from around the world for the 21st Golden Oldies Festival. The tournament features players over 35 years of age, and this year's event saw a select few represent the WRU in a 'friendly' against the Wooden Spoon.
Wales Under 18 captain Callum Bradbury is delighted to have seen his side claim a narrow 18-17 victory against a strong SA Schools 'A' side to end the three-match Under 19 International Series in South Africa on a high note.
The Wales U18 squad spent an emotional day in the drug-riddled townnship of Hout Bay. Hout Bay Warriors President Fred Johannes said the visit was 'the talk of the town' and will dream about the day everyday for the rest of his life.
RGC 1404's new head coach Mark Jones is hoping to build 'something special' in north Wales and is already looking forward to the development region participating in the Principality Premiership for the very first time.