NZ Rugby boss confirms discussions with SA on 'old-school' tours
SPOTLIGHT: New Zealand Rugby CEO Mark Robinson confirmed that his organisation has been in talks with South Africa over bringing back ‘old-school’ tours between the two nations.
In a report by NZ publication Stuff, the Kiwis are seeing it as a possible solution to help alleviate the issues that New Zealand has been experiencing since South Africa’s teams joined Europe.
“We’ve been open with all the SANZAAR parties that that’s something that we’re having a look at, and how we can consider that sort of format for the future,” said Robinson.
“Clearly, there is interest in it from both unions, but it’s very early days around those conversations.”
Along with Tests, these tours could also feature matches against franchise teams, which would mean the Springboks facing teams like the Crusaders and Blues when they head to New Zealand.
And when the All Blacks head to South Africa, matches against the Stormers, Sharks, Bulls, Lions and Cheetahs could be lined up.
“That’s certainly part of the conversation at the moment, [for it] to be a more, you know, more traditional type of tour, but again there’s a lot of work to be done there,” Robinson added.
These discussions have come ahead of World Rugby’s council meeting at the end of October where talks on the Nations Cup are set to dominate proceedings.
However, bilateral arrangements like the All Blacks-Springboks tour could precede any Nations Cup announcement.