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renegadebusdallas.com August 18, 2017


Australia axes Western Force from Super Rugby

12 August 2017, 12:36 | Kristopher Drake

Western Force dumped from Super Rugby

Australian Rugby Union Chief Executive Bill Pulver speaks during a press conference in Brisbane Australia. The Australian Rugby Union confirmed Friday Aug. 11 2017 it plans to cut the Western Force as

Western Force players past and present have reacted with anger and disbelief after the Australian Rugby Union announced they would be scrapping the West Australian side from Super Rugby for the 2018 season.

The ARU said it had chose to discontinue the Force's Super Rugby licence after weeks of consultation, following its decision to move from five teams to four as the southern hemisphere competition slims down to 15 franchises.

South Africa have already culled the Cheetahs and Kings, who have both announced they will move to play in the European Pro-league.

"The future of professional Rugby in Western Australia will now be the collateral damage of the decision making of the ARU and SANZAAR to expand Super Rugby to a convoluted and complicated 18 team structure against various advice and modelling received which explained the associated risks".

"I have enormous sympathy for everyone in Western Australia".

Clyne and ARU chief executive Bill Pulver were due to hold a press conference to discuss their decision in Sydney later Friday.

They will also consider launching legal action relating to the circumstances which led it to enter into the Alliance Agreement with the ARU a year ago.

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Every Australian team lost more than they won in 2017 and for the second-straight year no local side made the semi-finals.

The Western Force's parent body, Rugby WA, which has backing from mining billionaire Andrew "Twiggy" Forrest, said it was likely to take the team's case to the Supreme Court if it wins the right to appeal.

The Victorian Rugby Union now owns the Rebels' Super Rugby licence after buying it from former owner Andrew Cox.

"We did an exhaustive analysis, and at the end of the day the decision to cut the Force came down to the financial and performance aspects", he said.

As we have reinforced throughout this process, there are commercial realities which are linked to declining on-field performance across our Super Rugby teams which has put Australian Rugby in a position where it can no longer sustain five teams.

The Force responded to the news on Friday afternoon, declaring they would explore whatever means possible to remain Super Rugby.

"Our immediate concern is to support the individuals at the Western Force through these hard circumstances and we will deploy various ARU management staff to Western Australia to provide assistance to all players and staff". We need to get the balance right.



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