Welcome to The Rogues Rant, an occasional look at all things Rugby
Following on from Rugby Australia extending the suspension on Community Rugby out to June 1st, the IDRU Board has followed suit. All local Ruby activities across the board remain suspended until the first week of June. The Board has also expressed that there is a serious possibility that the 2020 season will be abandoned given the progress of the Coronavirus situation. At this stage plans are still in place to start the Senior Comp on the 28th June with all clubs playing each other once and the normal finals series to be played as planned in September. If it comes to the worse scenario and we don’t get away in June, the Board is looking at having some form of a knockout competition come September to decide the 2020 Premiership. With Junior activities also now delayed until at least June 1st, the Board and Junior Committee will be working together leading up to the May Board meeting to have a full review of the situation at that stage. All training activities at both Senior and Junior level remain suspended. All clubs have been advised of all the options for individuals to seek a refund or otherwise of fees paid for 2020.
World Rugby is rapidly closing down with the June Test matches in the North and Southern Hemispheres now very much in doubt. A final decision on the Tests will be made by IRU in April, but I think we can expect that none of the June Test will be played across the world. The Global Rapid Rugby Tournament has been cancelled for 2020, and Super Rugby remains suspended and looks very likely to be abandoned as well. NSW Country has cancelled all Country Championship Tournaments, both Senior and Junior for 2020. I’ll be very surprised if we see any live Rugby this year.
The knives are certainly out for Raelene Castle. The under siege RA CEO is coping it from all sides and is right in the middle of a right mess that is not all of her own making. Like many commentators have been saying for some time, Rugby in Australia has been sick for quite some time, long before Castle became CEO, and has continued its decline throughout her tenure. One thing about the whole situation at the moment is that for Rugby to survive and go forward a lot of things will have to change starting from the very top and going down to the grass roots as many have been calling for over the past ten years at least. Let’s get some lifetime Rugby people in the administration roles and start working for what is best for Rugby on the field. I am a strong believer that if you get things right on the playing field the other areas of the game will look after themselves. The best people to do that are people who have been there done that and know just what it takes to be successful on the field.
What is going to happen with Dave Rennie? Rennie is still in Scotland and as things stand is not likely to be able to take up the top job in July as planned. He can’t leave Britain at this stage with all the restrictions, with rumors doing the rounds that he is looking to get out of his contract anyway. It’s an interesting situation indeed!
All opinions offered in this column are the opinion of the author. They should not be considered to represent the views of the IDRU.