Rugby Australia

Australia want to host Rugby Championship "hub"

After a two-month lockdown to contain the spread of COVID-19, Australian authorities have allowed sports to restart domestic competition but international fixtures remain in doubt due to travel curbs and border controls.

"We're exploring with the Australian government whether that can be a bubble here in Australia and we fly in all of the SANZAAR partners and they are in a training bubble and then we can quarantine effectively and play a competition," RA interim CEO Rob Clarke said on Tuesday.

Massive job cuts and wages slashed as Rugby Australia announce phase one of rebuild

Rugby Australia will shed one-third of its workforce as well as cut salaries as it looks to save $5.5 million in phase one of a brutal wholesale restructure announced on Monday.

After lodging their 2019 financial report that provisionally flagged a $9.4-million loss, RA interim chief executive Rob Clarke announced the massive job cuts in an attempt to reshape the cash-strapped code.

Former Wallabies captain calls for scrapping of Giteau Law in wake of Kurtley Beale's offshore move

NSW Waratahs and Wallabies utility back Beale had his long-touted two-year deal confirmed by the Paris-based Racing 92 on Tuesday morning.

Melbourne Rebels and emerging Wallabies forward Luke Jones will join him at the glamour club from next season, with both set to play in Rugby Australia’s truncated domestic Super Rugby competition before departing.

The move isn’t uncommon, with both players previously enjoying European stints and many others crossing to the NRL or signing rich foreign deals.

An NFL-style combine set to re-start Australia's new domestic competition

It’s been almost two months since professional rugby was last played in Australia when Super Rugby was suspended due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, but a revised domestic competition is scheduled to get back underway on July 4.

Senior players within Australia want to introduce a new concept a week before the new competition’s start date in a move that could give rugby a surge of interest in a country where engagement in the sport has been badly waning in recent times.

Wallaby calls for rethink of 'outdated' Super Rugby

The Melbourne Rebels back believes the competition, which features 15 teams across Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Argentina and Japan, needs to be replaced by a more local product.

"Maybe the model that we've got is a little bit aged and outdated and maybe we need to have a rethink," the 30-year-old told

"I guess this is almost forcing us to do it, whether it be in the short term until those borders open or whether it be long-term into something else that's a bit more sustainable, bit more domestically focused.

NZ's Raelene Castle steps down from chief executive position at Rugby Australia

Castle, who took a 50 percent pay cut and laid off 75 percent of Rugby Australia (RA) staff, saying the body faced losses of up to $120 million if no more rugby was played this year, was under pressure to resign.

Eleven former Wallabies players, including Nick Farr-Jones, George Gregan and Michael Lynagh, had also signed a letter earlier this week demanding a leadership change at the RA.

"I love rugby on every level and I will always love the code and the people I have had the honour of working with since I took this role," Castle said.

Former Wallabies captains demand Rugby Australia leadership change

The letter, signed by the likes of Nick Farr-Jones, George Gregan and Michael Lynagh, alleges mismanagement at RA, which is struggling to keep rugby afloat during the global sporting shutdown.

"In recent times, the Australian game has lost its way," the Sydney Morning Herald newspaper quoted from the letter.

"It is a defeat inflicted not by Covid-19, or an on-field foe, but rather by poor administration and leadership over a number of years.

Good progress made in Rugby Australia pays talks with players

Castle, Rugby AU directors Phil Waugh and Daniel Herbert, RUPA chairman Campbell Fisher and CEO Justin Harrison and representatives from Australia's national teams and four Super Rugby teams were on a two-hour video conference on Tuesday.

In a statement Castle said she felt "good progress" was made in the hookup.

RUPA is set to go back to its members to communicate the results of the meeting, something that appears to be the key in working towards a deal.

'He's a very, very good player': The potential Wallabies star Will Genia believes is the real deal

Genia is back in Brisbane amid the coronavirus pandemic after spending a season with the Kintestsu Liners in Japan’s second-tier Top Challenge League following last year’s failed World Cup campaign with the Wallabies.

During his time back in Australia, the 32-year-old has been working with McDermott after fielding a call from Reds attack coach Jim McKay to help aid the development of the incumbent Queensland halfback.

Former Wallabies star Quade Cooper reveals ambitions to play NRL this year

The 32-year-old is back in Brisbane after wrapping up his debut season with the Kintetsu Liners in Japan’s second-tier Top Challenge League in January.

Cooper still has another eight months until he is due to return to Japan for playing duties, and is contemplating asking Kintestu for permission to explore a short-term NRL deal before the June 30 transfer deadline.