With just over two weeks to go before the secret ballot elections on May the 12th I can see very little change in World Rugby. The current President Bill Beaumont is up against his Vice President in Agustin Pichot.
Beauont represents the current order that has been in charge since the IRB was formed as it is to protect a small minority that control the game. Unfortunately the way the voting is weighted the old order is going to be hard to shift.
When I listen to Pichot I don't believe he is the right person to lead the sport forward. Any change is probably better than what the sport currently has, but I find him just too weak as a character. He has gone from playing rugby directly into administration and I don't believe he has the experience needed.
A big surprise France being awarded the 2023 World Cup.
World rugby is currently governed by the home nations of England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales along with France. Italy was added to the Six Nations not to strengthen the competition, but to add another 3 votes into their kitty. This has made them the dominant force in world rugby as out of 50 votes available they already have 18 banked.
A Pichot victory on the 12th would require him to obtain 26 votes or more. He will have Australia,New Zealand and South Africa along with his home country of Argentina totaling 12 votes. I can see him picking up Tonga and Fiji as they have been suffering financially for some time.
Politics should never come into sport yet this stinks of an old school racket. It was no coincidence that Georgia had a home test against Scotland just before the World Cup as that would have been a thank you for a vote.
We saw how corrupt FIFA was when Blatter got ousted and I can assure you there is loads happening in World Rugby. The same rugby unions are controlling what happens not only within the game in their region, but world wide. They don't want the game to grow as that would cost money, their money.World Rugby made a reported $60 Million from the last World Cup and it is not surprising why one of the Home Nations gets awarded the World Cup every 8 years. The pool matches are shared amongst them so they all make tons of cash. Who would vote against that if you were in that circle.
I just wish there was a bigger figure head who was a stronger character than Pichot who could turn the rugby board on it's head. I would like to see Eddie Jones or someone similar in stature who holds respect take the World Rugby Board head on.
If change doesn't happen on the 12th Beaumont will be President for another 4 years followed by the next in line which will be a Frenchmen. Don't be surprised if England host the 2031 World Cup as there is a pattern forming here. The Irish along with South Africa and France were in the selection process for the 2023 World Cup with South Africa coming out on top with the highest evaluation. It then went to secret ballots knocking South Africa and Ireland out.The Irish had been screwed as Scotland voted France and in Irish words "went for the money". Ireland have openly said they are done in putting forward themselves again as the whole process needs to be changed.
Giving the World Cup to the States interferes in their plans as they are also a Northern Hemisphere region taking the rewards out of their pockets. World Cups alternate between Northern and Southern Hemispheres every 4 years.