Representatives from the 6 Nations, SANZAAR, EPCR, LNR, PRL, PRO14, the Top League and International Rugby Players have furthered their commitment to collaboration on matters of player welfare at a dedicated World Rugby forum in Paris. 

With Rugby’s major stakeholders committed to injury-prevention initiatives, the forum provided an important opportunity to consider the global injury and game trend landscape, consider shared technology and programmes, discuss matters of mutual interest and ensure alignment and consistency of law, sanction and programme application at the elite level.

The meeting, on the final day of World Rugby’s player welfare symposium, reflects World Rugby’s objective to have greater meaningful collaboration with the world’s major competitions in key areas, and builds on the success of similar collaborations such as the annual Medical Commission Conference.

Headline outcomes

  • Commitment to collaborative and comparative injury surveillance programmes
  • Renewed commitment to ensure clear and consistent sanctioning of dangerous high tackles
  • Commitment to join World Rugby’s law trials programme at the appropriate point in the four-year law amendment cycle
  • Commitment to ensure the premium player welfare standards programme is consistently and successfully applied across competitions
  • Commitment to collaborate on evidence-based player welfare initiatives 

Chairman of World Rugby’s Rugby Committee and Council Member for Scotland John Jeffrey said: “Rugby is united in its commitment to ensure that the sport is as simple and safe as possible for all to play and this meeting reflects a strong desire for the world’s top competitions and International Rugby Players to collaborate on matters that advance the care and welfare of the world’s top players.

“While international rugby provides the global shop window for the sport, elite club competitions are the staple with nearly 2000 matches in the last three years alone and therefore they have a huge role to play in everything we do. 

“They have been at the heart of the HIA programme that has delivered a reduction in global concussion incidence and are committed to implementing our premium player welfare standards programme, probably the most comprehensive medical standards in sport. Today’s outcomes build on that solid base and we look forward to implementing them.

“It is encouraging that the desire to collaborate and further injury-prevention in our sport is stronger than ever. I would like to thank my competition colleagues and representatives for their full and meaningful contributions.”

Photo: I Picarel/FFR