Asia Rugby Held its end of year Council and AGM meetings on the pacific island of Guam from 4th through 6th November saw a number of exciting developments.
Member unions attended workshops on latest World Rugby Regulation changes to better regulate and run competitions in their jurisdiction and on potential income streams such as the Olympic Solidarity fund.
With less than three years to go until RWC2019, member unions also agreed on the projects and outcomes of the region’s Impact Beyond Rugby World Cup 2019 strategy, with the three areas being: growing the game in Japan, growing the game across Asia, and growing broadcast of Rugby across the region using all platforms. The strategy will be launched in Tokyo in February 2017.
Impact Beyond RWC 2019 strategy
The Impact Beyond RWC 2019 strategy is a key element of Asia Rugby’s new strategic plan, which the Council approved for implementation from 1st January with the vision of bringing Asia together through the spirit of rugby via the mission of growing the Asian Rugby Family by promoting the values and healthy lifestyle of rugby in Asia; inspiring the youth of Asia to a lifelong association with rugby; and, creating and driving an environment for sustainable success.
Delegates heard that 577,000 new participants have already been introduced to the game over the Last year through the Get Into Rugby programme, with the target of another 250,000 per year moving forward under the region’s Asia 1 Million project.
China’s delegate briefed fellow unions on the game-changing USD 100 million investment in the game by Alisports over the next 10 years, and some of the projects it hopes to implement.
The AGM approved changes to Asia Rugby’s Articles and Regulations, notably to help unions on the World Rugby membership pathway, and the Jordan Rugby Union was promoted from Associate to Full Asia Rugby member as it moves upwards since joining Asia Rugby in 2008.
Delegates also voted in Japan’s Makoto Nishiki and Ada Milby from the Philippines as new Executive Committee members, who will have key leadership roles in Impact Beyond and in further driving Women’s Rugby participation levels across Asia over the next three years. They join Asanga Seneviratne, Fawzi Khawaja and Nattapol Hemyoo who were all re-elected for a further 2 year period
Asia Rugby Anual Awards
Uzbekistan’s Rustam Naraliev won the region’s annual Award for Character and Japan’s Taizo Hirabayahi was awarded the annual Carlson Lin Match Officiating Award, whilst Malik Samarawickrama of Sri Lanka had already been awarded the region’s annual Distinguished Service Award at the recent Sri Lanka 7s.
Delegates also had the first preview of Asia Rugby’s revamped website and new App, which will be launched on 21st November. Asia Rugby invites all readers to watch this space; sign up to its new platforms and follow the rugby in Asia on its exciting journey ahead.