All Blacks: New 'World Rugby League' proposed

  • 26/01/2019
All Blacks captain Kieran Read.
All Blacks captain Kieran Read. Photo credit: Photosport

The All Blacks could face the Six Nations championship winner under a new World Rugby League structure due to be discussed at a meeting in Los Angeles next week involving all the major rugby unions.

The Daily Mail reports discussions are underway for a major overhaul of international rugby which would involve teams from the Northern and Southern Hemispheres, with the winners of the Six Nations and Rugby Championship meeting in a grand final.

New Zealand Rugby (NZR) will meet with its tier nation one counterparts and Six Nations officials in Los Angeles.

The All Blacks have won five of the last six Rugby Championship crowns, and the new format would provide much-needed financial relief.

"World Rugby see a concept that would essentially reduce the Six Nations to the European League for a global tournament that concludes with the crowning of a world champion every year as a way of redistributing the wealth between the northern and southern hemisphere countries, with the financial difficulties being endured by New Zealand, Australia and South Africa well documented," the Daily Mail reported on Friday (Saturday NZ time).

While NZR is understood to be in favour of the new concept, an unnamed Six Nations source told the Daily Mail there were concerns about the proposed format.

There is also known to be opposition from Ireland amid obvious logistical concerns for fans and players.

"Beyond the potential logistical nightmares, where does this leave the Rugby World Cup? It will basically become a seven-week tournament not unlike the 52-week tournament they have every year," the unnamed source said.

"At the moment 90 percent of the revenue for World Rugby comes from the World Cup, but there is clearly a desire to level the financial landscape when the southern hemisphere nations can see how successful the Six Nations is as a brand."


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