Australian Rugby Union has welcomed the Australian Sports Commission’s decision to increase Rugby’s funding in 2013/14.
Under the first round of funding of the ASC’s Australia’s Winning Edge 2012-2022 high performance game plan, Rugby Sevens has received a 91% increase to its yearly funding to $1.04m.
As part of the Commonwealth Government’s $120m investment in Australian sporting organisations, ARU will also receive a one-off payment of $500,000 to assist in establishing a training facility at the AIS.
ARU CEO, Bill Pulver welcomed the increase in funding for Rugby Sevens and said it recognised the inclusion of Rugby Sevens in the Olympic Games and our national teams’ standings as reigning Commonwealth Games Silver medallists and World Champions.
“The decision by the ASC to increase its funding of Australian Rugby is a clear sign that the Commission will support Olympic sports,” Mr Pulver said.
“This round of funding has also taken into consideration not just on-field performance but the off-field governance of National Sporting Organisations.
“The ASC made it clear when they released Australia’s Winning Edge 2012-2022 high performance game plan that sports needed to ensure they were performing on the field and in the board room.
“Rugby has made significant gains in the area of corporate governance and the ASC’s decision to increase funding is a clear sign that we are on the right track.
“We are pleased with the increase and one-off payment we’ve received and will be working hard to ensure our teams’ performances warrant a further increase in funding in 12 months’ time.”
The additional one-off $500,000 investment by the ASC for the establishment of a National training facility will be used to assist Australia’s men’s and women’s Rugby Sevens sides utilise the full potential of the AIS facilities in Canberra.
The 91% increase in High Performance funding will be invested in the continuing support of ARU’s Rugby Sevens Program.
Mr Pulver said the inclusion of Rugby Sevens in the Olympic Games has seen a dramatic increase in investment from countries around the world in their Rugby Sevens Programs.
“We know that countries like Canada, China, England and the USA are all investing heavily in their Rugby Sevens programs to ensure they are competitive at the 2016 Olympic Games,” Mr Pulver said.
“To ensure our men’s and women’s sides are provided with every opportunity to win Gold in three years’ time ARU will continue to increase its investment in Rugby Sevens in the lead up to the Rio de Janeiro games.”