ProSlide is the global leader in water ride design and manufacturing, supplying high-performance water attractions to new and expanding water parks around the world. For over three decades, ProSlide…read more
Australia and New Zealand withdraw from 2021 Rugby League World Cup over COVID concerns
Australia and New Zealand have pulled out of the 2021 Rugby League World Cup scheduled to commence on 23rd October in the United Kingdom, citing COVID safety concerns for players and officials.
In a joint statement released this afternoon, the Australian Rugby League Commission (ARLC) and the New Zealand Rugby League (NZRL) urged the tournament to be postponed until 2022.
The ARLC and NZRL advised that the decision to withdraw from the World Cup came after considering the risk of COVID-19 infection in the United Kingdom and the amount of time the majority of NRL players would be required to spend away from home under strict biosecurity conditions prior to the World Cup.
The RLWC2021 said the decision would have "wide ranging implications for international rugby league" and that they would "continue discussions with all stakeholders to agree on the best way forward".
The joint statement advised: “The Australian Rugby League Commission and New Zealand Rugby League today informed the International Rugby League and Rugby League World Cup organisers that Australia and New Zealand will not compete in a 2021 World Cup because of player welfare and safety concerns.
“The ARLC and NZRL have again requested the RLWC2021 be postponed until 2022 to minimise risk of players contracting COVID-19 and ensure the best outcome for player well-being.
“The ARLC and NZRL have resolved, that in the present environment the risks to athletes and officials travelling to the UK to participate in the tournament this year are too great, and it is unable to endorse Australia and New Zealand participating in the RLWC in 2021.”
NZRL Chief Executive, Greg Peters highlighted the differences between the way in which the UK was managing COVID compared to Australasia and insisted it was “simply too unsafe” for the teams to take part in the tournament.
Peters noted “the safety and well-being of our people is the main priority, and unfortunately, that cannot be guaranteed to our satisfaction.
“There are stark differences between how the pandemic is being managed in the UK compared to Australasia and recent developments have highlighted how quickly things can change.
“The tournament organisers have moved heaven and earth to make this work, so it is not an easy decision, but the COVID-19 situation in the UK shows no sign of improving, and it’s simply too unsafe to send teams and staff over.
“We understand how disappointing this is for fans and those involved; however player and staff safety remains paramount.”
ARLC Chairman Peter V’landys’ concerns aligned with those of Peters and issued a renewed appeal for the tournament to be rescheduled for next year.
“In the current environment, the risks to the safety, health and well-being of the players and officials travelling from Australia to participate in the tournament this year are insurmountable.
“The majority of NRL players are currently living away from home under difficult biosecurity protocols. They would then be required to remain under protocols and away from home for the duration of the tournament before again quarantining on return to Australia. This is too much to ask our players and officials to do.
“We have again requested the IRL and Rugby League World Cup consider postponing the event until 2022 to enable all players to participate.”
The statement advising International Rugby League (IRL) and Rugby League World Cup (RLWC) organisers of their decision to withdraw from the tournament came on the same day league officials expressed a highly ambitious desire for rugby league to become an Olympic event in time for the Brisbane 2032 Games.
Image courtesy of NRL
20th February 2020 - Mental health initiative accepted as an official Rugby League World Cup 2021 program
30th November 2018 - Western Sydney Stadium to host new World Cup 9s rugby league tournament
16th February 2021 - Canberra’s Bruce Stadium precinct new home for local and rural rugby league talent
12th February 2021 - Hills Shire expands its rugby league facilities
13th March 2020 - Alcohol banned for rugby league fields in Christchurch
28th February 2020 - Rugby League partnership helps disadvantaged Queensland youth
23rd February 2020 - Canterbury Rugby League calls for alcohol-free rugby league fields
18th October 2019 - Unanimous vote backs rugby league in NSW being governed by one body
11th October 2019 - Plans for Melbourne Rugby League Centre of Excellence move forward
9th September 2019 - Australian Rugby League Commission names new Chairman
15th June 2019 - Telstra expands NRL deal to include women’s rugby league
27th May 2019 - NSWRL claims rise in rugby league participation
19th May 2019 - New Darwin rugby league stadium gets official opening
22nd March 2019 - Balmain rugby league club secures NRL future with new facility to come
18th January 2019 - Australian Government supports rugby league development in Fiji
22nd June 2018 - Rugby league women ready for first State of Origin
30th May 2018 - New Zealand Rugby League names new Chief Executive
Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?
The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.
However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.
Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.
Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.
Click here to subscribe.
The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.
APT (Advanced Polymer Technology) is the leading global manufacturer of polyurethane-based materials, acrylic coatings and synthetic turf products for sporting and recreational applications. From…read more
Yellowbox is an Australian technology company that has developed smart locker technology operated through an app with a focus on experience for users and facility managers. Found at Beaches, Aquatic…read more
Augmented Creative is an open organization of like-minded and highly dedicated, creative people who conceive, plan and execute visual solutions. We pursue new and innovative visual ideas to help…read more
The P.A. People is a specialist integrator and contractor in sound reinforcement, audio visual systems, performance lighting and production communications. Over its almost 50 year history the company…read more
Summit Fitness Equipment is now part of NovoFit - see www.ausleisure.com.au/suppliers/novofit/read more
Intelligenz provides Leisure Management Software for managing all your Program Registrations, Facility Bookings, Membership Sales and POS Transactions; including detailed Reporting, automated…read more
Hydrocare Pool Services Pty Ltd offer 30 years of experience in aquatic industry features, products and water treatment. Hydrocare Pools has undertaken water treatment for aquatic centres and…read more
get listed with our suppliers directory
Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!