Ireland, one of five joint hosts in 1991, was eliminated after getting eight of the 39 votes in the first round #8211; France picked up 18 and South Africa 13.
#8220;We did everything in our power to bring the tournament to South Africa and we expected to have that right confirmed.
France will host the 2023 Rugby World Cup after beating rival bids from South Africa and Ireland.
However, at a World Rugby Council meeting in London on Wednesday, France was chosen to hold the 10th event.
#8220;We would like to apologise to the people and government of South Africa for raising their hopes,#8221; added Mark Alexander, president of South Africa Rugby.
World Rugby chairman Bill Beaumont described the selection process as the #8220;most transparent and comprehensive#8221; in the organisation#8217;s history.
#8220;We cannot hide our desolation but, for the sake of rugby we wish the 2023 tournament hosts every success.#8221;