A study calling for a ban on tackling in school rugby is “extreme and alarmist” says World Rugby.
Professor Allyson Pollock, from Newcastle University, has urged the UK’s chief medical officers (CMOs) to remove contact from the school game.
A statement from World Rugby read: “World Rugby and its member unions take player safety and welfare very seriously and proactively pursue an evidence-based approach to reduce the risk of injury at all levels.
“Contrary to Pollock’s opinion, the systematic published studies where injury has been properly defined and monitored, suggest the risk for pre-teens is not unacceptably high compared to other popular sports.
“It is well documented that, for most sports injury rates increase with age and yet the research quoted mixes 9-12 with 18-20 age groups.”