Thu, Feb 24, 2005 - Page 20 News List

New format may benefit Springboks

INTERNATIONAL RUGBY South Africans say time zone differences and travel place them at a disadvantage in Super 12 competition, but the field may soon level out


Bergamasco, who fractured his left cheekbone during the match with Wales, is out for the rest of the European tournament.

South African-born Roland De Marigny will be Italy's kicker.

Former Wallaby captain Nick Farr-Jones has chided the International Rugby Board for what he considers a lack of effort to develop the game globally.

Farr-Jones told a news conference in Suva, Fiji that the IRB should stop focusing on rugby's top teams and concentrate on developing second and third tier nations, the Fiji Times newspaper reported Tuesday.

"They just need to get off their backsides and start employing new concepts to be able to develop the game," Farr-Jones, who led Australia to the World Cup title in 1991, was quoted saying.

"By the looks of it the richer countries get stronger and stronger while the weaker ones stay as they are."

Farr-Jones said rugby would have to alter its strategy to compete with soccer, which was a truly global game and had a broad development policy.

"We saw that soccer is doing very well in that area of development which was evident at the [2002] World Cup," he said, listing the semifinal runs of Turkey and South Korea in that tournament as evidence of soccer's global development.

"If I was at the IRB I would select 10 very well developed nations in the game and give them the responsibility of helping and nurturing second and third tier countries."

Farr-Jones, who was in Fiji on business, said he hoped to raise the issue with IRB later this year.

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