New Zealand reveal who they’re backing in World Rugby election

New Zealand Rugby says it backed challenger Agustin Pichot against incumbent Bill Beaumont in the contest to be Chairman of World Rugby.

New Zealand, with Sanzaar partners Australia, South Africa and Argentina support Pichot.

However, Beaumont has the support of the Six Nations group — England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, Italy and France — and is expected to amass the 26 votes he needs to remain chairman.

“If you look back over many years, World Rugby has been very frustrating from a New Zealand perspective,” Impey said.

“And I think the straw that broke the camel’s back was the Nations Championship, which we were strongly in favor of.

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“We see both candidates have got a platform of governance reform and that is also overdue.″

“We have felt dissatisfaction over the lack of progress over the last few years, on a range of issues.

“While we have great respect for Bill Beaumont as an individual, this has become an issue where there has been a lot of self-protection from existing players versus those of us, particularly the Sanzaar nations, who want to see the game grow.

“That is why have supported (Pichot).”


LIST | 5 England players who could swap nations for 2023 World Cup

Sir Bill Beaumont has hit back in the World Rugby election race and revealed he wants to create a law change that would allow Manu Tuilagi and other England stars to end their Test career playing for other nations.

The former England captain raised the possibility in his re-election manifesto ahead of next month’s contest with former Argentina scrum-half Agustin Pichot.

In it he promises a review of Regulation 8 which covers eligibility to play for national teams “to see how we can support the longevity of players’ international careers”.

Based on this, we’ve looked at some other current England stars who could head to the 2023 Rugby World Cup to represent other nations.

We’ve not included Billy Vunipola, as we think he is likely to be still in the reckoning for England in three years time.

1. Manu Tuilagi (Samoa)

  • Current number of caps: 41
  • Age at the start of RWC 2023: 32
  • Did you know:  He was named Manusamoa, after the name of the Samoan national team

The England centre, who was born in Fogapoa and came to the UK at the age of 13, is one of a clutch of Pacific Island players whose eligibility status could change if the restrictions are relaxed. He is the younger brother of Freddie, Henry, Alesana, Anitelea and Sanele Vavae Tuilagi, all of whom are Samoan internationals and also played for Leicester. It would be fantastic for the powerhouse to complete the set.

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