The rugby league chief has branded Australia and New Zealand’s decision to withdraw from this year’s World Cup as “selfish, narrow and timid.”
Defending champions and fellow international powers say they will not travel to England for the fall tournament because of fear of Covid-19.
However, the decision, which many branded as the death of the test rugby league, was blamed by Rugby Football League president Simon Johnson.
He states: “They say they can’t travel to participate in this year’s tournament because they didn’t have the guarantee they asked for.
“They believe the problem is insurmountable. The difficulty for us is that this selfish, narrow and timid decision did not have to be taken.
“The organizers of the Rugby League World Cup are bending backwards to provide all guarantees to Australians and Kiwis.
“British citizens are now making that decision about the October tournament where athletes currently in Tokyo are attending the Olympics when the rugby union team Wallaby is planning to come to Wales in October. You’ll want to know if you did, when the New Zealand cricket team is already here.
“Some rugby league authorities believe they can’t get over it, but other sports and athletes seem to have no problem.
“Rugby League World Cup organizers, like the British Government, spend a great deal of money to do what they can to ensure the safety of athletes when they are here and when they move back and forth. I’m wearing it.
“Australian and New Zealand rugby league officials are worried that they may not be ready to accept these guarantees.”
Despite his anger, Peter Vandis, chairman of the Australian Rugby League Commission, argued that the well-being and safety of players must be a top priority.
He states: “Not participating in this year’s World Cup is not a neglected decision by the Commission, but the best interests of players and officers must be our top priority. Protecting them is our absolute priority. is.
“In the current environment, the risks to the safety, health and well-being of athletes and officers traveling from Australia to participate in this year’s tournament cannot be overcome.
“The majority of NRL players now live away from home under difficult biosecurity protocols.
“Then they will have to stay under the protocol for the duration of the tournament, leave home and then quarantine again when they return to Australia. This is too much to ask players and stakeholders. ..
“The IRL and the Rugby League World Cup have again requested that we consider postponing the event until 2022 so that all players can participate.”
Greg Peters, Chief Executive Officer of the New Zealand Rugby League, said:
“Compared to Australasia, there are significant differences in how pandemics are managed in the UK, and recent developments have highlighted how quickly things can change.
“It’s not an easy decision as the tournament organizers have moved heaven and earth to do this job, but the situation at Covid-19 in the UK has shown no signs of improvement and will send teams and staff. Is too dangerous.
“We understand how disappointing this is for fans and stakeholders, but the safety of our players and staff remains a top priority.”
Aussie and Kiwi’s decision to withdraw from the World Cup was accused of being “cowardly”
Source link Aussie and Kiwi’s decision to withdraw from the World Cup was accused of being “cowardly”