Bill Beaumont calls meeting to save Nations League

Вторник, 05 Мар, 2019

Read has joined a number of rugby's top players in speaking out over the 12-team tournament and its impact on player welfare and Tier 2 nations.

World Rugby is understood to be ready to omit Pacific Island nations Samoa, Tonga and Fiji from the 12-strong annual World League competition planned to launch as early as 2020.

Global stars including England captain Owen Farrell and Ireland fly-half Johnny Sexton have warned of serious player welfare and integrity concerns over World Rugby's proposed new competition structure.

The tournament would be run in every non-World Cup year, and would feature the Six Nations teams, the Rugby Championship teams, as well as Japan and USA.

Players of Pasifika heritage like former All Blacks Jonah Lomu and Michael Jones have showcased the explosive brilliance of Pacific rugby and individuals from all three nations have played a huge part in popularising the game on a global stage.

World Rugby will shortly be releasing a detailed outline of the model as originally proposed which gives broader context to the project. This project has at its heart long-term growth and stability, not short-term wins, and that includes greater opportunity for players.

A backlash from the International Rugby Players Council soon followed, but World Rugby CEO Brett Gosper came out in defence yesterday, stating that the report was inaccurate and that no decision had been made.

International Rugby Players chief executive Omar Hassanein confirmed player views had been conveyed to World Rugby on several occasions.

"New Zealand Rugby continues to advocate for an worldwide rugby calendar that ensures the future growth of the game in New Zealand and around the world, including the Pacific", Tew said.

They also insisted a new global Test structure would benefit all in the game and attract new audiences.

"We do not think so", Gosper said.

"Another discussion indicated that "we might as well start playing league". In addition we have a huge opportunity to grow the woman's game in this country that will also require new resources.

Rugby Australia was not immediately available to comment.

World Rugby has refused to confirm leaked details of the competition but insists players' concerns are being addressed.

The new tournament will consist of the Six Nations and Rugby Championship nations but will also include Japan and the US who will join the southern hemisphere competition. I'm surprised that in this age we are not proactive enough in our communication levels.

"Finding options to review that will deliver increased commercial revenues that allow Australia to have a high performing Wallaby team, keep our best talent in the country and invest in community Rugby, are not easy to find but must be explored".

"We're not going to let a commercial land grab happen here at the expense of player welfare and the integrity of the worldwide game", Nicol said. 'This would be a disaster for the Pacific Island nations, and for any nation omitted from the top 12 teams to be frank.