Matt Giteau has floated a thought bubble for World Rugby to consider.
The utility back, currently playing in Japan, made an interesting suggestion on Twitter on Tuesday that garnered a significant reaction from rugby fans around the world.
Thoughts on union adopting a similar set up to the league World Cup where talented players not picked in tier one teams, NZ, Oz, England etc can then play for their homelands Fiji, Samoa, Tonga etc?? Purely for World Cup year. Make comp stronger ♂️??
— Matt Giteau (@giteau_rugby) November 13, 2017
He tweeted: “Thoughts on union adopting a similar set up to the league World Cup where talented players not picked in tier one teams, NZ, Oz, England etc can then play for their homelands Fiji, Samoa, Tonga etc?? Purely for World Cup year. Make comp stronger.”
As of Tuesday afternoon, Giteau’s tweet had attracted 1300 likes, 250 retweets and 116 comments.
It is a divisive topic but Giteau’s sentiment certainly has merit.
Here are some of the more interesting responses.
Massive kick in the teeth for players that pull on the Fiji/Samoa/Tonga jersey for the other 3 years though. Personally if you’ve been capped by NZ and are dropped. You shouldn’t then be able to say, “I’ll play for a different country then” Waters down the comp if anything.
— Tomas Sheehan (@Tomas_Sheehan) November 13, 2017
Love it! If you are not selected for T1 you can go to a T2 you qualify for.
— JB (@Jbeardmore) November 13, 2017
Once a player is capped they should be tied to that nation, unfortunate as it maybe, plenty of players with dual allegiance but once they are capped the other options are then closed. Better systems needed to aid smaller nations needed though.
— Brendan O’Malley (@BrendanOMalley3) November 13, 2017
I’m all for it! Can only make these teams stronger by bringing experienced and talented players in.
In the longer term, these teams will become competitive enough to convince young eligible talents to pick them instead of the usual Tier1
— Marco Damaggio (@marco_damaggio) November 13, 2017
I think it’s a great idea but that player needs to have played a certain amount of games for that tier 2 nation across the 3yrs before world cup… otherwise a player that has put in the hard work over 3yrs will miss out on the RWC!
— Ricky Jones (@rickyjoneshere) November 13, 2017
No way..RL makes a joke of international rugby. How can you swap countries as if they’re clubs. What’s the point never helped RL grow anyhow
— Daniel Redhead (@Danred23) November 13, 2017
Rugby league isn’t as big a game internationally as rugby union I think it’d hurt the game more then help it. Look at Japan for example 10 years ago they were getting walloped by everyone then 2 years ago they beat South Africa. Let the tier 2 develop their own players not tier1
— josh clutterbuck (@ClutterbuckJosh) November 14, 2017