Coronavirus pandemic cancels Oceania championships plans
The Oceania Rugby has announced the cancellation of the Oceania Rugby Men and Women's championship in November due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The decision was made by relevant government and international public health authorities as they are keeping the wellbeing of the regional rugby community as their top priority.
"The Oceania Rugby Sevens Championship is the only competition that brings all Oceania Member Unions into one location from the World's best team in the circuit, to the development unions which is truly unique," says Bruce Cook, the General Manager for Oceania Rugby.
Cook says that the difficult, yet the appropriate decision has to be made although quite unfortunate under the present circumstances for the region.
"Whilst disappointed with the cancellation, we continue to leave no stone unturned in ensuring the health and wellbeing of players, officials and the public in the Oceania region is prioritized above all," he said.
The Oceania Rugby is currently in consultation with World Rugby to explore separate supplementary competition at regional levels in addition to Series events to ensure Olympic Qualified teams and teams seeking qualification through the Olympic repechage series and will be having appropriate amount of high-level competition opportunities.
"There is a strong desire within the region for supplementary competition concept, and Oceania Rugby in collaboration with Member Unions are putting all its efforts together to assist World Rugby to explore opportunities for a safe and secure High Impact return to action in Oceania," says Wayne Schuster, the Oceania Rugby Competitions Manager.