International Rugby
IRB to confront concerns about standards
April 20, 2010
French Rugby union Federation (FFR) president Bernard Lapasset speaks during a press conference in Paris, 08 october 2007. Argentina's advance to a first World Cup semi-final was recognised 08 October when Pumas pair Felipe Contempomi and Juan Martin Hernandez were announced as two of the five nominees for the 2007 IRB Player of the Year award.
IRB chairman Bernard Lapasset will welcome the game's key stakeholders to Dublin next month © Getty Images

The International Rugby Board will host a conference in Dublin next month to address global concerns over the way the game is being played and refereed.

Leading coaches, referees and administrators from the world's top 20 ranked nations will debate five key issues which have emerged following a survey of all 117 IRB member nations. The central theme is "global playing trends" with the delegates to discuss the tackle/ruck area, excess kicking and scrum collapses/resets. The physicality of the modern game and player welfare is also on the agenda along with the IRB's current law-making process.

"Rugby is currently enjoying unprecedented growth all around the world, reaching out to new countries, communities and audiences. Yet it is important that within that growth we collectively remain focused on the core values of our sport and ensuring that Rugby is as enjoyable to play, officiate and watch as possible while promoting the best-possible player welfare practices," said IRB chairman Bernard Lapasset

"The object of the two-day conference is to take stock of the game and holistically consider global playing trends as we embark upon an exciting and pivotal decade for the sport which includes Rugby Sevens Olympic Games debut in Rio in 2016 and the next three Rugby World Cups. The Conference will provide a forum for leading technical experts and playing representatives from around the world to gather to exchange information, discuss playing and coaching techniques and trends, currency of law and player welfare considerations."

The conference is not a decision-making forum but any recommendations which emerge from the session, which will be held on May 14-15, will be put to the IRB's committee at their October meeting.

The Conference is also a key element of the next four-year cycle of the Law Amendment process that will shape the way that Laws are evaluated, but any experimentation and/or amendment will not take place until after Rugby World Cup 2011.

The IRB held its first such conference at Woking in 2007 and a number of recommendations were made, including that a place be found for Argentina in an annual international tournament.


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