26 Nov 2003

Fiji rugby chief decries plan for a Super Nine competition

4:31 pm on 26 November 2003

Fiji's rugby boss has today called for the International Rugby Board to scrap a proposed competition in which the richest nine nations play each other in a mini-World Cup.

The Nine Nations proposal, revealed on Monday by Australian Rugby Union chief executive officer John O'Neill, calls for the current membership of the Six Nations and the Tri-Nations Series to play every four years, alternating with the Rugby World Cup.

The Fiji Rugby Union chief executive officer Pio Bosco Tikoisuva in a statement it is hard to see how this concept will grow rugby in the global sense.

He says the success of the Rugby World Cup was built on the smaller unions and the extent to which the crowds in non-rugby locations like Launceston and Townsville embraced teams like Romania and Japan.

Mr Tikoisuva compared the new plan to a golf Skins contest where he says the rich guys guys play each other but nobody else gets invited.

He says if this concept gets up it will be another playing opportunity the rugby minnows will be denied access to.