World Rugby boss Bill Beaumont open to funding Pacific Island Super Rugby side

World Rugby would be willing to fund a new Pacific Island Super Rugby side, if a newlook competition gets off the ground.

Chairman Bill Beaumont has told Sky Sport NZ he supports the concept and believes it would provide a massive financial boost to the game downunder.

New Zealand and Australia are currently at loggerheads over the future of Super Rugby, while South Africa and Argentina appear to favour a move north. 

But both trans-Tasman unions agree that a Pacific Island franchise is essential, regardless of the makeup of the rest of the competition.

Speaking on the Breakdown, Beaumont reveals World Rugby backs the initiative and would throw money behind the franchise - wherever it may be based.

"I think we should do it, without a doubt," Beaumont says. "What I find quite interesting is that there seems to be huge enthusiasm [for it] south of the equator. 

World Rugby boss Bill Beaumont
World Rugby boss Bill Beaumont. Photo credit: Getty

"There is a team they are talking about in Hawaii, playing in Major League Rugby. I have heard that Fiji or Japan could be invited into Super Rugby.”

Beaumont, a British & Irish Lions captain, pointed to the Jaguares as an example of a precedent set back in 2016. 

World Rugby helped fund the Argentinian franchise during their Super Rugby debut, while they have also assisted Fijian Drua in the last three Australian National Rugby Championships.

"These are decisions that need to be taken, because we are in a position at the moment where players and teams have been travelling the globe. 

"I don’t think this will return in the near future, so what we have to do is be creative and work together with our partners."

Super Rugby Aotearoa continues this weekend, with the Chiefs hosting the Crusaders, while the Blues travel to Dunedin to take on the Highlanders.

Join us for live updates of the Chiefs v Crusaders from 7:05pm Saturday

World Rugby boss Bill Beaumont open to funding Pacific Island Super Rugby side