A World Rugby vote has today seen eligibility rules changed to allow certain players to transfer to a different country.
In a change to Regulation 8, from 1 January 2022, in order to transfer from one union to another under the revised Regulation 8 (eligibility), a player will need to achieve the below criteria:
- The player must stand-down from international rugby for 36 months
- The player must either be born in the country to which they wish to transfer or have a parent or grandparent born in that country.
- Under the revised Regulation 8 criteria, a player may only change union once and each case will be subject to approval by the World Rugby Regulations Committee to preserve integrity.
After 1 January 2022, any player who meets the above criteria can apply immediately for a transfer.
BREAKING:— InternationalRugbyPlayers (@IntRugbyPlayers) November 24, 2021
Eligibility Rules changed to allow international players to transfer from one country to another after @worldrugby council vote today
Subject to the player demonstrating "a close and credible link" to that union via birthright and only once in a player's career🏉🏉🏉 pic.twitter.com/vQ4RDDksDn
International Rugby Players CEO Omar Hassanein said: “The proposal to change the rules around player eligibility is something that we have worked on over many years with our member associations.
“Many players across the world will now benefit from the chance to represent the country of their or their ancestors’ birth, serving as a real boost to the competitiveness of emerging nations, which in turn, will benefit the game as a whole.”
Approval of the amended regulation follows requests by emerging nations and a subsequent wide-ranging consultation between World Rugby, member unions, regions and International Rugby Players.
Join the Conversation
Enter your email address and be the first to know about our news and events around the world.