World Rugby has found itself at a revolutionary crossroads after Agustin Pichot launched an eleventh hour bid to challenge Bill Beaumont in the presidential elections.
Pichot’s six-point plan includes:
1) Addressing the challenges of COVID-19 as part of a wider alignment of the global playing calendar, creating a ‘compelling narrative’ for men and women in XVs and Sevens. Clubs, unions and private equity firms will be consulted about an annual tournament featuring 12 to 14 Tests per nation per year.
2) A democratic governance structure. A long-term goal of scrapping the weighted vote system that gives more power to wealthy nations, as well as revenue sharing.
3) A growing grassroots and youth game, including focus on developing emerging nations such as Brazil and Tunisia.
4) A safe and entertaining game, featuring a dedicated World Rugby Innovation Department to look at projects such as Hawkeye technology and a flagship rugby computer game.
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5) Mandatory athletes’ commissions to put players at the heart of decision making – with discussions about reducing wages to create sustainability.
6) A World Rugby management ‘fit for purpose’ – reviewing all internal structures to ‘restore trust’ in the governing body.
LIST | 5 of the biggest scandals in rugby history!
Rugby Union has had its fair share of controversial moments down the years. Here we look at five of the most memorable...
1. KAMP STAALDRAAD
It was a military-style “boot camp” organized as a “team building” exercise for the South African national rugby union team, the Springboks (or Boks), during their preparation for the 2003 Rugby World Cup (RWC). Details of the camp emerged in the South African media, resulting in protest from the upper administrative levels of South African rugby.
- The team was ordered to climb into a foxhole naked and sing the national anthem while ice-cold water were being poured over their heads. During their time in the hole, recordings of God Save the Queen (used as England‘s national anthem) and the New Zealand All Blacks haka were played at full volume.
- It was confirmed that firearms were present at the camp, although reports varied as to whether they were ever pointed at anyone.
- The players were forced to crawl naked across gravel.
- They also were ordered to spend a night in the bush, during which they were to kill and cook chickens, but not eat them.