1 Oct 2020

Rugby Championship: Impey says NZR not informed of December dates

From Checkpoint, 6:27 pm on 1 October 2020

New Zealand Rugby has been caught up in a war of words with its international counterparts over the draw for the upcoming Rugby Championship, with chief executive Mark Robinson doubling down this week on his claim he never agreed to a December 12 game, which would force the All Blacks into quarantine over Christmas.

But minutes of a SANZAAR phone meeting held on September 17, allegedly show Mr Robinson was present and "all parties" agreed to an amended schedule with the December 12 game between the Wallabies and the All Blacks.

The chair of Rugby Australia, Hamish McLennan also confirmed that NZ Rugby agreed to the date, but this week even Sam Cane said he was blindsided by the news, and he said his coach Ian Foster was also in the dark.

New Zealand Rugby Chair Brent Impey is holding a press conference on Zoom and Checkpoint reporter Alex Perrottet has been listening.

He says Brent Impey is doubling down, saying NZR were not informed about game dates forcing the All Blacks into isolation at Christmas. He said there has been a "fundamental error" regarding minutes allegedly showing NZR's Mark Robinson agreed to a six-week competition finishing on December 12. Impey said NZR did not agree.

Impey said in fact there was an impasse between the parties involved in the Rugby Championship and he has numberous emails showing this.