New Zealand Rugby All Blacks coach Ian Foster announced that he, along with his staff, have agreed to take wage cuts. The team’s players also agreed to salary cuts, the details of which are still currently being looked into.
This comes as New Zealand along with the rest of the world has had to suspend all sports to avoid the spreading of COVID-19 through large public gatherings.
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In an interview with Newstalk ZB, Ian Foster explained:
“Our coaching group has definitely taken a big cut,”
“It’s already been agreed to – with rugby, when there are no games there’s no revenue, and that’s a tough thing. There’s been a lot of shaving of the programmes, and what it’s also come down to is cutting salaries.” said he Alll Blacks coach
Players wages will be a bit more complex to work out as they are made up of a combination of a base salary as well as the number of test matches the players have appeared in.
“It’s a different sort of process for players but I know they’re willing to go into that space too,” Foster said.
“Theirs is [a] more complex [situation] … but it’s a given and they understand that. It’s just a matter of working it through so all the different levels of players are dealt with fairly. I haven’t heard one player yet who doesn’t accept that it’s going to happen.”
“There’s a real willingness of those involved in the game to get behind [this] and do whatever it takes to make sure [the game] survives.”
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With games being suspended not just in New Zealand but the world over, the reality is that even once the pandemic subsides and life begins to normalise once again, it will still take time before sports can resume back to normal.
Until then sacrifices are going to be made within the sports industry which includes finances which is something the All Blacks have agreed to deal with.
“We’re in a high-cost, high-revenue industry, and when the revenue dies, you’re left with high costs. So it’s a no-brainer. There’s going to be some pain.” the All Blacks coach said.
“We all have to take a cut, and it may not be the last. But we’ve got a lot of people who are willing to get in behind and are passionate about it, and I’m sure we’re going to get through.”
All rugby stakeholders can do for now is wait and ride out the storm as the world tries to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.