VIDEO: Beaumont promises 'global reforms'
REACTION: Bill Beaumont has promised ‘global reform’ during his second term as World Rugby Chairman.
The former England captain, Beaumont, was re-elected when he beat off the challenge of former Argentina skipper Agustin Pichot.
Beaumont, 68, who campaigned on the promise of opening up the sport, claimed 28 of the 51 votes to overcome the 45-year-old Pichot – who planned to modernise the body and used the hashtag #GlobalGame on social media.
Beaumont said the next 12 months will be a challenge for domestic and international schedules.
“We have to pull together,” he said in the wake of a vote that was split mainline along hemispheric lines.
“It is important that we don’t have any major issues, the north [Northern Hemisphere who votes for him] and the south [Southern Hemisphere who voted for Pichot].
“Beaumont said the immediate issue is how World Rugby is going to work its way through the COVID-19 crisis.
“We have to look at the playing schedules,” he said, adding: “We have to look at [and ask if] the July and November windows are working.
“There could well be an opportunity – now with COVID-19 – that we can look at these windows.
“During this unprecedented and global COVID-19 crisis, we must act and unite unions from the north and south and the professional leagues around a common objective to define a strong and sustainable future for all,” he said.
“We will pursue these reforms together and act in solidarity with the rugby family, to drive the game forward on and off the field, further the welfare of our players and make the sport more attractive and accessible.”
The announcement of the results was brought forward from the original date of May 12 due to the smoothness of the process.
Beaumont, who will have another four-year tenure, will be joined by the French Rugby Federation’s chief Bernard Laporte as his vice-chairman.