Longer wait for ‘poached’ players
WORLD Rugby has cracked down on Test nations poaching “project players” from other countries by extending the eligibility waiting period from three years to five years.
The changes to Regulation 8 will see players wanting to switch nations to play Test rugby have to spend 60 consecutive months in their new country to be eligible via residency, and will come into effect in 2021.
Queensland Reds prop Taniela Tupou aka “Tongan Thor”, will become eligible for the Wallabies this year as expected under the three-year residency requirement.
Standout Western Force rookie Isi Naisarani, the Fijianborn No.8, will also be qualified for the Wallabies by 2020.
“Representation is the reward for devoting your career, your rugby life, to your nation and these amendments will ensure that the international arena is full of players devoted to their nation, who got there on merit,” World Rugby vicechairman Agustin Pichot said.
Tongan Thor, Taniela Tupou.