Senate report to be handed down

Super Rugby
Beth Newman Profile
by Beth Newman

The results of the senate inquiry into Australian rugby are scheduled to be tabled on Tuesday.

Initially slated to be handed down on Monday, it was pushed back on the agenda by late Monday night, with a time extension granted for the report.

After three public hearings, the senate committee has compiled a report, with recommendations for Australia's rugby future, which will be handed down..

Rugby Australia CEO Bill Pulver, former chief operating officer Rob Clarke, chairman Cameron Clyne and Western Force general manager Mark Sinderberry were among those to give public evidence to the senators during the months-long process.

Twenty submissions were made to the inquiry before it closed on October 12, with organisations from the Rugby Union Players' Assocation (RUPA) to the NSW Rugby Union all submitting documents.

It is unclear exactly what ramifications the report will have, as the senate has few enforcement powers, but WA sentaor Linday Reynolds, who initially called for the inquiry, hoped it would create some transparency in the process.

Rugby Australia chairman Clyne has repeatedly questioned the need for the process at all.

Monday's report will provide conclusions around the following terms of reference: 

1. the Australian Rugby Union Board deliberations leading to the decision to reduce Australian teams from five to four in the national competition;

2. whether there continues to be a truly national rugby union footprint in Australia;

3. the role of national and state-based bodies in encouraging greater national participation in rugby union;

4. the corporate governance arrangements and composition of national and state-based rugby union bodies, including community representation on those bodies;

5. the impact of the decision to reduce the number of Australian teams on national participation in rugby union; and

6. any other related matters.