2 Jun 2011

IRB confident Fiji's best team will be at Rugby World Cup

6:48 am on 2 June 2011

The head of the International Rugby Board says he is confident the best team from Fiji will play at the Rugby World Cup.

The IRB has been told by the New Zealand Government there will be no relaxation of the ban on members and associates of Fiji's military regime entering New Zealand, some of whom would play in the tournament.

But the board's chief executive, Mike Miller, says he is confident Fiji's best players will take the field later this year.

"It's clearly a sensitive issue. We have been having meetings for the last. We will continue to meet on the subject and it really doesn't help to play this out in public and so at this point in time we have no comment to make except to say discussions will continue and hopefully things will be resolved."

The New Zealand Foreign Affairs and Rugby World Cup Minister, Murray McCully, says there is no sign of a move towards democracy in Fiji, and changes would be needed for the ban to be relaxed.