Shelford slams IRB rulings

2011-10-20 14:34

Cape Town – Former All Black captain, Wayne “Buck” Shelford is at it again, this time lashing out at the IRB for their handling of the rules and regulations of the Rugby World Cup.

The outspoken Shelford has voiced his concern in the past for the unnecessary pressure the All Blacks are placed under, following an off-field drinking incident involving Corey Jane.

This time, he warns that the IRB needs to clear up a few ambiguities before the next edition of the tournament.

"The tournament thus far has been brilliant. There have been issues of the rules of the tournament: The unfairness of games, of breaks between games, all those sorts of things, a lot has to be sorted out before the next world cup,” Shelford told The New Zealand Herald.

Shelford suggested that instead of moving with the times, the IRB needs to take a step back to fulfil its supposed vision to have rugby become a global sport to rival the popularity already experienced by football.

"We've got to step into the 20th century big time with the way we're running this game, this tournament - it's not just about the big boys - if they want to make this game global, present it as a global game," Shelford added.

"Make it fair for everybody and have a little bit of respect for the players who come here, not throwing them out of their hotels the day after a game - that's terrible, I think just give them a couple of days grace to leave.

"But it's all about money. And that shows you that greed of the IRB that it's all about money.

Shelford went onto say that the IRB’s rule to only give the player’s a limited amount of time to stay in the country after they had been eliminated is a disgrace to the organisation.

"I'd say everyone in the world would think they should be given a couple of days’ grace. I think it's pretty mean to throw them out of the country after losing.

"It's the players that bring the tournament to life not the IRB.

"It's become a big money making venture and they are making lots of money. If you want to spend money on the players, well here's another way of doing it.

"They've (the players) just actually brought the money through the turnstiles, through the sponsorship to actually help this game, so your helping them for a couple of days for a hotel bill, for a, you know, food bill, they'd appreciate that tenfold."

He also took a swipe at organisers over tomorrow's 3rd-4th place playoff clash between Wales and Australia.

"They've got to play for it, they've got to go out there and play for that position because that's part of the tournament whether you like it or not.

"It's a tough one for both teams... It's a character game. After both losing their semi finals it's a big one to come back and play for a loser’s position.

"I don't know why the administrators don't look at that as well, it's probably just another money making venture, another game to make money. They could have put a plate final on along the way and get the best out of the rest."


  • Peter - 2011-10-20 15:03

    big big Buck

  • johan.blertsie.cilliers - 2011-10-20 15:25

    They could seriously make it more interesting by having the losers in quarterfinals play each other for 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th place. More games, more broadcasting rights to sell. But for us at home a little more entertainment when your team exits early. He is dead right about wanting the IRB to make it into a proper Global Sport

  • Lida - 2011-10-20 15:49

    I agree with him. Let the boys stay a couple of days more. Rugby is not a world wide sport but we could make it one. Lets try

  • WilliamPie000 - 2011-10-20 15:49

    Shelford made some very good points. I must concede that I have a big problem with the IRB, rugby administration in general, and of course referees.

      Mark - 2011-10-20 21:52

      referees that the IRB pick which brings you back to "BIG problem with the IRB"!!!

  • Philip - 2011-10-20 16:03

    Have a plate final for all the 2nd tier nations such as russia, canada, romania, namidia etc etc etc...that way they can really build up their competetive edge and you would see a lot more funds coming in from those nations. Take a leaf out of the hong kong sevens manner of building passion for a game!

  • tony.kirby1 - 2011-10-20 16:19

    Looking at the log of the two top teams in the 4 pools The team with the highest points and the lowest points are in the final. Loose 2 in round robin and still get to finals. A joke

      Thomas - 2011-10-20 21:05

      tony.kirby1. You are so right!!!! All the NZ scribes and commentators are walking around with blinkers on, too ashamed to look you in the eye and admit Paddy O Cheat and Lowrence have lowered this WC to "JOKE" status!!! Why have pool B,C and D if you are going to fix matches so any real contenders don't challenge the ABs!!!!!! It would have been easier if they had just written a cheque for the cup and saved all the money time and effort the other teams paid to get there!!!!!!

  • adrien.mcguire - 2011-10-20 17:16

    I am not an IRB fan as I believe the administrators are there for the money and not for the game. I believe also there are areas of corruption , nepotism and a cloak of secrecy being built by those in power. No-one is allowed to discuss or challenge the organisation without being dragged before a disciplinary committee, however when you have a litany of "mistakes" , as made by Paddy O'Brien , Bryce Lawrence and his father Keith (also on the Referees committee) they refuse to do anything about it or even make a statement. It is imperitive that they are stopped now before we have another FIFA or IOC on our hands.

  • aiazmir - 2011-10-20 18:49

    I agree. The RWC has been reduced to a manipulated scenario. The "human touch" has been reduced to a shambles and it's all manipulated to get the most commercial value out of the tournament. This is a disgrace to humanity and, like the SWC, it is managed for the benefit to the highest bidder. The players don't matter anymore. It is the RWC "show" that matters.

  • Daniël - 2011-10-20 20:22

    This RWC was so well organised, that New Zealand will win it..Shame on the IRB for doing that.

  • Klark - 2011-10-20 21:01

    Well done Buck New Zealand leading from the front again good to have a country with balls .That puches above its weight

      Eugene - 2011-10-21 02:24

      "punches above its weight" for a small country like ours"and all that sort of crud.Your head is so far up that you can't see that nz is bigger than most countries in the rwc not only physically,but in the sheer numbers of rugby players that it has to choose from.Most other countries are a little more diverse with football as the no.1 sport.Outside of rugby,nz does not have much.Not to mention,without the islander "feeder" teams,you have even less.Problem is,You're not honest enough to admit it."Honest",now there's a word that is non-existent in kiwi speech and in kiwi practice.

      Kevin - 2011-10-21 08:13

      @Eugene, outside of rugby we are the league world champs,netball world champs and knocked the mighty proteas out of the world cup!!...and we did better than you lot at the football world cup..what do you guys have? high crime rates,poverty, corruption, racism etc etc, is that why our nation is full of well educated SAs looking for a better quality of life? well they found it here bud.

  • Johann - 2011-10-20 21:14

    So he is speaking his mind and good for him, I totally agree with all his statements. N-Z Rugby expressed their concern re. local sponsorships not allowed at RWC and that may be a problem for them next time, look at the fuss about the "non-RWC sponsor" gum guard worn by a player that resulted in a +-$5000 fine for the player, REDICULOUS!!! How much would "local" sponsorship logos hurt the "official" ones??

  • Roland - 2011-10-20 21:15

    Well done Buck !! You have the nail on the head. Its all about money and greed. The players give their all by putting their bodies on the line and what do they get? A slap in the face.

  • Jenny - 2011-10-20 21:56

    Without sounding a pessimist I am one who has always believed that the present set-up of the World Cup has been doomed to failure. To draw comparison with soccer or athletics is wrong as globally these sports are much stronger and importantly more competitive over a broader speetrum. Some of the results in this years competition where teams have been totally "white washed" is similar to our own Currie Cup where the decision has been made to reduce the number of teams next year. Globally the game of rugby may be spreading but the competive/skills difference is not. Japan in 1995 lost to New Zealand 145 - 17 Japan in 2011 lost to New Zealand 83 - 21 surely it would be the supreme optimist who would call this a marked improvement by the Japanese in 16 years a team which now includes a number of players not of Japanese origin. The World cup finals need serious thought as to their format and in particular the quality of the teams participating. Since South Africa's re-addmission to rugby, only seven different teams have participated in semi-finals since 1995, a major upset being if either new Zealand, Australia or South Africa do not make the semi-finals. A major re-think is needed by the IRB.

      Klark - 2011-10-20 23:50

      NZ Australia and the Proteas should start their own tournament invite Wales, France,Ireland, Scotland the Pacific nations leave out England. Im sure it would work ,and the IRB should be very concerned if all the big players start to unite together against the IRB

      ronald.lobjoit - 2011-10-21 07:57

      @Klark; perhaps we should strap you to a rocket and send you back to the planet you're from! Firstly the Proteas play cricket, so what are you on about... This is a World Cup, so invite the World, everyone's trying to promote the game globally and you suggest we leave out countries??? Crawl back into your hole buddy!!

      Klark - 2011-10-22 04:40

      @Ronald the intellectual Midget There is no Bok on the chest of the Jersey anymore Ronald havent you noticed old chum.Its been replaced by a Protea. The ANC dont want it there to many negatives from the past. Next you will be called the Black Proteas LMFAO

  • Paul - 2011-10-25 12:39

    I agree - they fine the French for the manner in which they confronted the HAKA but allow the use of the new haka which shows people slitting peoples throats. This isnt tradition but f###ing barbaric - definitetly not a rugby challenge

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