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ARU to review strategic plans

AAP logoAAP 8/11/2016

The Australian Rugby Union (ARU) has bowed to pressure from a number of high-profile former players, saying it will review its strategic plan for the code.

Dozens of ex-Wallabies, including the likes of former World Cup winning captain Simon Poidevin, had signed a letter detailing their concerns about the organisation's approach to managing rugby in Australia.

Key amongst complaints was the lack of funding for club rugby.

Ratings, crowds and participation have also been down for the code in recent years while a number of the Australian Super Rugby franchises are struggling financially.

The ARU issued a statement late on Tuesday saying it will review its plans marked in for the 2016-20 period.

It confirmed that a meeting was held on Tuesday that brought together representatives from community rugby, schools rugby, senior club rugby, and the professional game to discuss wide-ranging issues affecting the code.

Poidevin was in attendance.

ARU Chairman, Cameron Clyne said: "Today's meeting was very constructive and the ARU has made a commitment to review its current strategic plan in light of the discussions at the meeting.

"We had a strong representation of stakeholders from across all levels of the game and some good progress was made in terms of sharing knowledge and ideas for how to best move the game forward.

"Obviously a major part of the discussion was around the game at the community level and that's where a lot of the emphasis will be placed in the review of the current strategic plan."

The review will start early next year.

"All of the people present in the meeting are working toward the same end - growing participation and our great game," Poidevin said in the statement.

"They came to meet the ARU personally because they are passionate about the game and want more Australians to have the opportunity to know and love the game as they do. A goal the ARU shares."

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