RugbyWA wrapped over the knuckles for contracts




The Australian Rugby Union has sanctioned RugbyWA for breaching the Player Contracting Protocols. The Player Contracting Protocols operate to manage the contracting process for professional rugby players in Australia.


Following a 30 August 2007 meeting between the respective Chairman and CEO of the ARU and RugbyWA, RugbyWA has admitted to being involved in the following contraventions of the Protocols:

‘ Underwriting benefits provided to players by third parties

‘ Paying salaries to players in excess of the maximum contribution permitted to be paid by State Unions

‘ Inappropriate disclosure of remunerations provided to players

‘ Offering third party benefits to induce a player to sign with the Western Force

RugbyWA has agreed to conduct a comprehensive audit of its player contracting activities and to deliver a full report to the ARU by the end of the year.

Going forward, RugbyWA will provide the ARU with audit rights and access to its records and documentation relating to its player contracting activities. RugbyWA has also undertaken to review and improve its internal structures and controls to ensure that it complies with the Contracting Protocols.

In addition to the audit and access rights, RugbyWA has been fined $150,000 by the ARU for breaching the Player Contracting Protocols.

In imposing the range of sanctions, ARU Managing Director and CEO John O’Neill, reaffirmed the importance of the Player Contracting Protocols to the health of Australian rugby.

“It is vitally important that the protocols relating to player contracting are observed and complied with at all times,” John O’Neill said.

“We will continue to be vigilant and aggressively police the protocols,” he said.

In imposing a penalty, John O’Neill stressed the importance of a considered and meaningful range of sanctions.

“The fact is there is little to be achieved by imposing a financial penalty on RugbyWA that is so large that it damages its ability to compete and grow the game in Western Australia.

“I believe a fine of $150,000 together with the audit and access rights the ARU has secured is about right.

John O’Neill concluded, “The World Cup starts in a week and I’m pleased that we can put this behind us and focus on what will be a tremendously exciting tournament”.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.