Romania Disqualified

Romania has been disqualified from Rugby World Cup 2019; the reason being that ineligible players were fielded and made to play. There was an investigation set up and conducted by World Rugby. In this investigation Romania, Spain and Belgium were found to have breached laws.

Players of Romania were found to lie dejected on the ground after they played but were finally disqualified. Russia has now taken its place. An investigation has been set up by this foundation that found players from countries; Spain, Belgium and Romania have been ineligible since they were players who had participated in seven or nine games in the Rugby Europe Championship of the second tier. As a result of the violation found the teams were deducted points. This leaves Russia who has now become qualified for the World Cup the second time.

For Romania this is a huge blow as this is the first World Cup, where they will not participate. Germany has been promoted who takes the place of Spain. There was a qualifying playoff that Germany played against Portugal earlier.

The mistakes were made in including ineligible players at Rugby Europe level, but these were made in good faith. However World Rugby is disappointed with the outcome since these could have been avoided on the teams. There have been fines handed out by World Rugby which also suspends the teams from playing for five years. It remains to be seen how the teams will pick up from this outcome. Every team had some players who were ineligible to play such as Sione Faka’osilea. The teams were also asked to give out hefty fines as a result. Being banned from the World Cup for five years will leave Romania rethinking their strategies and how they can redeem their position and get the ban lifted from their team participation.