Cape Town - The Australian Rugby Union has rejected Andrew Forrest’s alleged $50 million offer to financially take care of the Western Force and save them from the Super Rugby axe.
Forrest was accompanied by former ARU director Geoff Stooke and former Wallaby John Wellborn at the meeting. They met with ARU chairman Cameron Clyne, deputy chairman Brett Robinson and director and former Wallabies captain John Eales.
During the meeting in Adelaide, Forrest made it clear that if the Force remained in Super Rugby, he would ensure that no financial risk would come to the ARU.
The ARU has told SANZAAR they will cut a team from Super Rugby next season. The Melbourne Rebels' license belongs to the Victorian Rugby Union. This means the ARU has no constitutional right to axe them. The Force were then selected for axing.
The ARU rejected Forrest's offer at the meeting and made it clear they were committed to cutting the Force.
"We were genuinely appreciative of Andrew's generous offer to back the Western Force and Australian Rugby, however, given the position we are in we are unable to work towards retaining five teams in Super Rugby," he said.
On Wednesday, RugbyWA will be informed if their appeal against the ARU's decision to axe the Force will be heard in the NSW Supreme Court. If this appeal fails, the Force will be cut from Super Rugby and will have to look at playing in another competition.