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More to be done to retain All Black players-Lochore

August 28, 2018 6:01 pm

Former All Black captain and Coach Sir Brian Lochore agrees more needs to be done to retain elite rugby players in this country.

After a slew of top players were offered to play overseas, New Zealand Rugby chief executive Steve Tew was prompted to controversially suggest that the government should pitch in players’ wages to keep top All Blacks from going overseas.

The All Blacks first-five Beauden Barrett has reportedly been offered $3.5 million a year to join a French club after next year’s World Cup.

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However, Sir Brian said any government help should be restricted to the elite players.

The government sponsored a lot of sports in New Zealand but it did not give a lot to rugby because it was reasonably financial, he said.

New Zealand Rugby Players Association chief executive Rob Nichol said he had no doubt the top level of the game in New Zealand was under threat.

Mr Nichol said New Zealand should take a leaf out of Ireland’s tax book as
Prime Minister Jacinda Adern said public support had always been forthcoming for rugby, but dismissed suggestions the taxpayer would fund player retention.

She described the All Blacks as a huge lightning-rod for the New Zealand brand, but any investment in the players would need to have a return.

[source: RNZ]

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