Manu Samoa to face Germany or Portugal in World Cup playoff
15 May, 2018, 21:49 | Author: Brenda Erickson
Each team has been deducted five championship points for every game an ineligible player was used (40-point deduction for Spain and a 30-point deduction for both Belgium and Romania), meaning Russian Federation now qualifies for the World Cup in place of Romania.
World Rugby docked the three nations five match points for each ineligible player used - 30 points for Romania and Belgium and 40 for Spain.
"Russia will qualify for Rugby World Cup 2019 as Europe 1, joining Ireland, Scotland, Japan and the play-off victor in Pool A, while Germany will progress to the European play-off with Portugal, subject to the appeals process", said a World Rugby statement today.
Samoa will take on Germany or Portugal for a place at the Rugby World Cup.
Spain were on the verge of taking the top European qualification berth via the Rugby Europe Championship and needed only a win over Belgium in their final fixture in March to secure passage.
The loss was overseen by Romanian officials, and after the result - which initially handed Romania a spot in the World Cup - the post-match scenes turned ugly and the referee had to be escorted from the field.
In reference to the entire investigation, the committee added: "Although mistakes were made by Rugby Europe and participating unions, they had not acted in bad faith".
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They are scheduled to play Japan in the tournament's opening match on September 20 next year at the Tokyo Stadium.
Spain had hoped for a reprieve after an investigation into their defeat by Belgium, which meant Romania qualified.
"World Rugby Regulation 8 stipulates mandatory financial penalties for breaches of 25,000 pounds per ineligible player for a union not represented on the World Rugby Council and 100,000 pounds for a union represented on Council", the press release said.
The committee ruled that "that each team be deducted five championship points for each game in which an ineligible player or players participated". "We have imposed financial sanctions which are to be suspended for five years".
World Rugby also announced that the rescheduling of Samoa's Rugby World Cup 2019 qualification matches. The victor of that tie will go into World Cup Pool A alongside Russian Federation. "The first leg will be played in Apia on June 30 with the return leg in Europe on July 14". The loser of that clash will go into the final repechage competition for the chance to qualify for the World Cup.
"Having considered all the evidence, including submissions from World Rugby, Rugby Europe, Spain and Belgium, the independent committee refused the request made by World Rugby and Spain to set aside the result of the match and determined that the match should not be replayed", the committee said in a statement.
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