PA­CIFIC dreamin

NZ Rugby World - - The Breakdown -

HOPES ARE RIS­ING that the Pa­cific Is­lands will one day be granted their wish of hav­ing their own Su­per Rugby team.

In re­cent years, San­zaar chief ex­ec­u­tive Andy Mari­nos has been on record say­ing he would se­ri­ously con­sider giv­ing the Is­lands their own team and will do what he can to make it hap­pen.

Now those calls have been en­dorsed by World Rugby chair­man Bill Beau­mont.

“I think we need to find a home for them, cer­tainly,” Beau­mont told Fox Sports. “They are ex­ports that are rugby play­ers.”

Beau­mont added his voice to a sit­u­a­tion that is be­com­ing in­creas­ingly com­fort­able. The Is­lands are es­ti­mated to have more than 200 pro­fes­sional play­ers ply­ing their trade in Europe and Ja­pan.

They are there pri­mar­ily be­cause they have no do­mes­tic team to keep them at home. This mi­gra­tory trend has seen many play­ers of Is­land ori­gin ul­ti­mately be­come el­i­gi­ble for var­i­ous Euro­pean na­tions un­der the three-year res­i­dency law.

The Wal­la­bies had six Fi­ji­born play­ers in their squad dur­ing the re­cent mid-year test pro­gramme against Fiji, Scot­land and Italy.

“Well they’re be­ing taken away from home, not nec­es­sar­ily all to Europe [but] they go away from home,” said Beau­mont.


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