The future of rugby is increasingly getting to a point of uncertainty as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc around the world.
Along with the improbability of rugby continuing in 2020, comes the big loss for those who are into rugby betting as well; betting sites all over the world have canceled most of the bets, especially after World Rugby Chairman Bill Beaumont announced this as a ‘distinct possibility’. We can only assume and hope that the situation will be back to normal as soon as possible.
With most of Europe already cancelling most of their tournaments for the 2019/20 season, except for the Gallagher Premiership Rugby, which is still holding out to try and complete the season once safe to do so.
Major League Rugby in America has also cancelled its season but decided to honour in full the contracts of all its players despite the 2020 season just five weeks into the campaign. There were fears that the squads for the twelve teams in the tournaments would be left out of pocket following the cancellation.
The home to a galaxy of super star names such as Ma’a Nonu, Mathieu Bastareaud and 2019 World Cup winner Tendai Mtawarira, unlike some other tournaments where around the world players have had pay cuts enforced on them or given unpaid leave, the MLR board voted to pay each player their full contract for the 2020 season, which means that upwards of 120 part-time players will continue to be paid their weekly rate through to June when the play-offs were supposed to begin.
In the Southern hemisphere things are quite the opposite with most Unions still hopeful to continue once this pandemic subsides in such a way that will allow fixtures to resume with Super Rugby only just past the halfway point.
SANZAAR CEO Andy Marinos said that New Zealand Rugby and the rest of the SANZAAR bodies will have the rest of 2020 to resolve their respective Super Rugby competitions.
The South African Rugby Union have set the 5th of June as a possible date to return to action in an attempt to revive its local calendar, which includes the SuperSport Rugby Challenge, Currie Cup and Guinness Pro14 as well as International fixtures against Scotland.
World Rugby is said to be looking at a new global calendar and a new international competition along the lines of last year’s Nations Championship proposal, albeit at club level instead.
Whatever happens, the future for rugby in 2020 is hanging by a thread and the sooner this pandemic subsides the better for all involved in the game of rugby.