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Nichol slams new World Rugby policy

November 28, 2017 11:33 pm

World Rugby’s decision to ban players from writing messages on their wrists has been slammed by New Zealand Rugby Players Association boss Rob Nichol.

He told Stuff the ban, introduced by World Rugby to align with the Olympics, was “completely inappropriate” and he was already working on getting it reversed.

Nichol, who said the directive was buried in a participation agreement, is fuming over the lack of consultation, despite World Rugby stating their rugby committee approved the ban after consultation last month.

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“I think the whole process that’s been around it has been poor,” he said. “It hasn’t gone out for consultation and that’s a big problem. It makes the game and themselves look a bit stupid.”

Under the International Olympic Committee terms of participation, no slogans, symbols or messages are permitted.

Nichol has made his views known to the International Rugby Players Association and New Zealand Rugby, and asked both to relay his association’s concerns to World Rugby.

World Rugby’s statement said a common-sense approach had been accepted by all participating teams and a spokesman told Stuff the ban covered the world sevens circuit and the Rugby World Cup.

Players have been told they will be fined $1000 if they continue the practice, which Nichol rubbished.

However, Fiji Rugby Chief Executive John O’Connor told FBC Sports that they have not receive any formal communication from World Rugby about the new policy.

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