Force deny they face Super axe

Tue, 28 Mar 2017 06:38

NEWS: Western Force on Tuesday dismissed concerns they face the axe from the troubled Super Rugby competition after a report suggested they will be scrapped in a revamped format.

Organisers SANZAAR are grappling with a way forward for the confusing 18-team, five-nation Southern Hemisphere championship and announced some three weeks ago that a shake-up was imminent.

Since then it has been mute on the issue.

In the absence of any decisions, speculation has been rife that it will be trimmed back to 15 teams, with South Africa losing two of its six teams and Australia cutting one of five.

Sydney's Daily Telegraph stated Tuesday that Western Force, which was founded in 2005, would be chopped rather than the Brumbies or Melbourne Rebels. The Waratahs and Reds are widely considered safe.

But Force Chief Executive Mark Sinderberry rejected this.

"The reports that are coming out of Sydney at the moment are totally false," he told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

"Two-and-a-half weeks ago we had a telephone link up with the Australian Rugby Union and at that time made very clear that there was a number of factors to be considered and there hadn't been any decisions made and we've had no further correspondence since then."

Sinderberry was adamant Western Force was not facing the axe.

"It's not a case of whether they should or not, at all. They will survive," he said.

Australian Rugby Union chief Bill Pulver said no decisions had been taken.

"At this point, there has been no determination on the future competition format or the teams involved in the competition," he said in a statement.

"We also wish to confirm for the public record that no decision has been taken on the removal of one of Australia's Super Rugby teams."

The competition currently straddles 17 time zones and four continents, resulting in complaints of lopsided contests, taxing travel times and a fragmented conference system seen as too confusing for fans.

Problems intensified in 2016, when Super Rugby expanded from 15 teams to 18 with the introduction of Japan's Sunwolves, Argentina's Jaguares and South Africa's Southern Kings.

Agence France-Presse

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 28 April 2017
Highlanders v Stormers 07h35 Dunedin
Cardiff Blues v Zebre 18h05 Cardiff
Edinburgh v Dragons 18h35 Myreside
Leinster v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 RDS Arena
Newcastle Falcons v Worcester Warriors 19h00 Kingston Park
Sat, 29 April 2017
Chiefs v Sunwolves 07h35 Hamilton
Reds v Waratahs 09h45 Suncorp Stadium
Force v Lions 11h55 Perth
Ospreys v Ulster 14h00 Liberty Stadium
Bath v Gloucester 14h00 Recreation Ground
Exeter Chiefs v Northampton Saints 14h00 Sandy Park
Saracens v Bristol 14h00 Allianz Park
Harlequins v Wasps 14h00 Twickenham Stoop
Leicester Tigers v Sale Sharks 14h00 Welford Road
Cheetahs v Crusaders 15h15 Bloemfontein
Treviso v Munster 17h05 Stadio Monigo
Kings v Rebels 17h30 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Connacht v Scarlets 18h35 Sportsground
Jaguares v Sharks 19h40 Buenos Aires
Sun, 30 April 2017
Brumbies v Blues 06h05 Canberra
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 23 April 2017
Clermont Auvergne v Leinster 27 | 22
Sat, 22 April 2017
Sharks v Rebels 9 | 9
Bulls v Cheetahs 20 | 14
Munster v Saracens 10 | 26
Force v Chiefs 7 | 16
Crusaders v Stormers 57 | 24
Highlanders v Sunwolves 40 | 15
Fri, 21 April 2017
Lions v Jaguares 24 | 21
Waratahs v Kings 24 | 26
Hurricanes v Brumbies 56 | 21
Mon, 17 April 2017
UP-Tuks v Maties 28 | 21
Sun, 16 April 2017
Bristol v Wasps 21 | 36
Northampton Saints v Saracens 25 | 27
Sat, 15 April 2017
Connacht v Leinster 24 | 37
Treviso v Edinburgh 21 | 6
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 8 3 0 5 17
Reds 8 2 0 6 10
Force 7 2 0 5 9
Waratahs 8 2 0 6 9
Rebels 7 1 1 5 7
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 8 8 0 0 36
Hurricanes 8 7 0 1 33
Chiefs 8 7 0 1 33
Highlanders 8 5 0 3 23
Blues 8 3 0 5 17
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 8 6 0 2 26
Bulls 8 3 0 5 14
Cheetahs 8 2 0 6 10
Sunwolves 8 1 0 7 5
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 8 7 0 1 32
Sharks 8 5 1 2 24
Jaguares 8 4 0 4 20
Kings 8 2 0 6 10