17th December 04:10 AM
World Rugby backs down over ban on wrist messages
By Rusiate Baleilevuka
Friday 01/12/2017

World Rugby have performed a U‑turn over its policy to ban players writing personal messages on the strapping on their wrists.

New Zealand Rugby Players Association chief executive Rob Nichol slammed this new policy after it was announced.

TVNZ reports that in a spectacular back‑flip, World Rugby announced last night that they will adopt a common‑sense approach to players' messages on their wrists.

They said that they understand the emotion around this matter and the policy is aligned with the Olympics position and other major sports.

World Rugby said that the re‑focus on this area was in response to an increase in size of such messages and to deter any inappropriate content.

That said, a common‑sense framework will operate at the Dubai 7s tonight and this has been discussed and agreed with the teams.

World Rugby said it is not a new policy and has been operational for several seasons after aligning with the Olympic environment before the Rio Games.

The governing body stated the policy was resurfaced because player messages had increased in size over the last season, with some covering the whole forearm (a greater area than permitted for sponsor logos on shirts), and "clearly needed to be reviewed".

Meanwhile the Fiji Airways Mens 7s team will take on Russia at 7.06 tonight in their first game, they will then face Wales at 10.06 tonight before facing Australia at 4.06am tomorrow in their last pool match of the Dubai 7s.

Barring any upsets, the Fiji Mens is likely to meet Scotland or France in the quarter final, they are likely to take on England or Australia in the semifinal, or New Zealand or South Africa in the final.

The Medal quarterfinals will start at 6.30pm tomorrow, the semifinals will be held at 1.19am Sunday while the final will kick off at 4.33am Sunday.

South Africa are the defending champions. Fiji has only won the Dubai 7s title twice which was in 2013 and 2015. We have lost out in the final seven times.

Meanwhile, the Fijiana 7s team has been bundled out of the Cup competition of the Dubai 7s after finishing last in its pool standings.

Fijiana lost all three pool games in the Dubai 7s and will play in the Trophy semi‑final against South Africa at 7.50 tonight.

The Fijiana lost to Ireland 12-20, the lost to Spain 5-19 and they lost to Canada 14-31.

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