Florian Grill responded on Monday to the controversy surrounding the refereeing in the quarter-final match that the French XV lost to South Africa in the World Cup (28-29). The president of the French Rugby Federation refuses to attack the referee but points out France’s lack of influence on world rugby.
France, the host country of the Rugby World Cup, qualified for the quarter-finals after being shocked at the top by South Africa (28-29). After the defeat of Fabien Galthée’s Blues, many criticisms targeted the referees’ decisions. When asked on Monday by RMC Sport, Florian Grill refused to specifically attack New Zealand official Ben O’Keefe.
“There is a real issue, it is an important point, we need to be more influential at the international level. Today the French Rugby Union does not have the influence it should have at the international level,” the FFR president said on the sidelines of laying the first stone for the Rugby Innovation Center in Ile. de France. “We no longer have any members on the World Rugby board, we have only had one on-field referee to represent France during the World Cup, and we have very few members on committees and working groups.”
>> Living France and South Africa again (28-29)
“There’s more work, more attendance.”
Upon his arrival to the presidency of the French Football Federation after the departure of Bernard Laporte at the beginning of the year, Florian Grill once again expressed his regret at the absence of a global strategy for his association with international bodies in recent years.
“There is a decisive influence strategy for France that must be developed within the framework of the World Rugby Championship. We must work more, be more present. In three months, I saw clearly that we were unfortunately completely absent from international bodies,” analyzed the French Rugby President. “We have formed a group of fifteen people, and we have projects to develop rugby at the international level and especially in the African continent, which will represent 40% of the world’s population by 2050. Rugby is taking root and France has a responsibility. And also with some Europeans in our countries and in our areas of influence in Overseas territories, we must also be more present.”
Florian Grill concludes: “The influence of France must be… We cannot be at the highest level in sporting terms and be almost non-existent in the international concert of World Rugby. I said last Friday that France did not weigh in. “It has been enough at international level. Unfortunately that was a warning. “We need to evaluate more, that is indisputable.”
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