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Dublin: 10°C Thursday 25 February 2021

Australia propose idea of holding a mini World Cup in 2021

The aim would be to provide an injection of cash to unions across the world.

Mini World Cup idea is up in the air.
Mini World Cup idea is up in the air.
Image: Photosport/Stuart Walmsley/INPHO

RUGBY AUSTRALIA ARE proposing a mini World Cup in 2021 to boost the coffers of international rugby.

The RA chairman, Hamish McLennan, told the Financial Times that he would like the tournament to run in parallel with the Rugby Championship.

“We are still expecting the Rugby Championship to go ahead this year but perhaps we can add to it and create a mini World Cup,” McLennan said in his interview with the Financial Times.

“We have the French (coming) in July but if anyone else wants to come out, great. We have a significant British and Irish population here and South Africans. We are open to creating a new tournament and keeping the international calendar going.”

World Cup winners South Africa didn’t travel to Australia in 2020 for the Rugby Championship because of player welfare concerns.

European rugby has been hard hit by the pandemic with the sport going ahead behind closed doors – sucking the income from unions and clubs right across the continent.

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Australia, however, was able to facilitate fans to watch last year’s Rugby Championship and is proposing games this year to provide funds for unions, believing the ex-pat communities in Australia will pack stadiums.

Australia are currently hosting India in a cricket series while the Australian Open tennis Grand Slam is scheduled to begin next month as their government has managed to successfully contain the virus, due to strict border controls.

Originally published at 09.41

About the author:

Garry Doyle

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