• Sanzaar: Centralised Rugby Champs possibility for future

    Sanzaar chief executive Andy Marinos says the success of the Australia-hosted Tri-Nations shows that a centralised tournament is possible if needed in the future.

    The All Blacks were crowned Tri-Nations champions following a second consecutive draw between the Wallabies and Argentina in Sydney. In a tightly contested tournament, two wins out of four matches and three bonus points were enough for the All Blacks to secure the title.

    This year’s Rugby Championship was reduced to three teams and rebranded as the Tri-Nations after world champions South Africa, due to difficulties around the pandemic, were unable to compete on the international stage this year.

    The Tri-Nations was hosted by Australia and the idea of a centralised tournament was a success, with all six rounds being completed with no disruption from the coronavirus pandemic.

    ‘Another positive from this competition has been the realisation from the members that if required in future years, the concept of a centralised TRC is very possible with the prospect of double-header rounds a huge benefit for the local fans and wider broadcast audience across the four geographies,’ Marinos said, after congratulating New Zealand on their victory.

    ‘Sanzaar would like to thank Rugby Australia as hosts of the Tri-Nations. They showed wonderful professionalism and determination to ensure the tournament took place in Sydney, Newcastle and Brisbane. I believe rugby fans in Australia that attended matches, and those watching overseas through our host broadcasters, appreciate all the hard work that was put in to produce a six-match tournament that delivered some great rugby.

    ‘The relationship between RA and its partners, including Tourism Australia, Destination NSW and Tourism & Events Queensland, was also key to the success of the tournament in such challenging times. The establishment of a best-practice environment for the players to train and play, robust medical protocols and access to fantastic stadiums were essential and all very much appreciated by Sanzaar management.’

    Photo: Getty Images

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    Dylan Jack