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The Rugby Union Players’ Association 2010 Annual Report


Contents 02. About the RUPA 03. Our People 04. President’s Report 06. CEO’s Report 12. Player Services Report 16. Personal & Career Development Report 21. ACT Brumbies

22. Western Force 23. Melbourne Rebels 24. Queensland Reds 25. NSW Waratahs 26. IRPA Report 27. AAA Report 28. Sponsors & Partners

ABOUT THE RUPA Our mission: To collectively develop and promote the best possible professional standards and conditions for our members and for the growth of rugby.

• The Rugby Union Players’ Association was incorporated in October 1995 in direct response to the inception of professional rugby.

• As its name suggests, the RUPA is an organisation established to promote and safeguard the interests of its members, namely the professional rugby players of Australia.

Matt Hodgson and Pek Cowan with some young Force fans.



• Currently 100% of Australia’s full time professional players are members including the Wallabies, NSW Waratahs, Qld Reds, ACT Brumbies, the Western Force and the Melbourne Rebels.

The RUPA Board The RUPA would like to acknowledge the time and efforts of Rod Kafer, Patrick Phibbs, Ben Hand, Morgan Turinui, Van Humphries, Chris O’Young and Tom Hockings, who were also members of the 2010 RUPA board through to the AGM and corporate governance restructure. As at 31 December 2010, the RUPA Board consisted of the following (L-R):













PRESIDENT’S REPORT There is no doubt that we would not be in the stable and formidable position that we currently find ourselves, without our sponsors, partners and supporters passion and generosity.

The past 12 months have been an industrious time for the Rugby Union Players’ Association. With the departure of former CEO Tony Dempsey and former President Rod Kafer, RUPA has engaged new challenges, and has productively moved towards an exciting new era and direction. I would like to make special thanks to Tony and Rod for their significant contributions to RUPA over their many years. I am sure they will always have an ongoing involvement across the RUPA’s activities. In 2010, the RUPA invested significant resources into three major issues at arbitration. Once these were resolved and determined, the RUPA could then focus on our core business – the players. It was agreed that although the CBA between the players and the ARU was due for renegotiation, the RUPA would not prematurely enter into any discussions without first determining our structured objectives and plan of attack. There were two critical issues confronting the RUPA at this time firstly, the need to appoint a new CEO



with a vision to move the organisation forward; and secondly, the need to improve the foundations of the organisation through amendments to our corporate governance and constitution. Both Rod and I felt strongly on these issues and acted swiftly in order to position the RUPA to be able to achieve both our macro and micro goals for 2010, 2011 and beyond. With the help of recruitment company Sportspeople, the RUPA received a large number of highly qualified applicants for the CEO position – eventually withering these applications down to a final six. In late July, the RUPA was extremely pleased to announce Greg Harris as its new CEO. Greg’s understanding and knowledge of sports administration made him a clear and outstanding choice to lead the RUPA through this period of transition. From his most recent experiences as the CEO of the Western Force through to his tenure as the Executive Director and architect of the growth of Sydney University Sport, it was felt that the RUPA’s acquisition

of Greg brought to the organisation a vision, passion and drive that would hold us in very good stead for the future. Having announced our CEO-elect, the Board sought to make significant improvements to the current RUPA constitution – notably, the composition of the board – which was carried through by special resolution at the Annual General Meeting during Wallaby camp in Coogee. The outcomes of this resolution saw the structure of the RUPA Board change to consist of: a President; a Chairman; a Current Player Representative from each Australian Super Rugby team; two Independent Directors; one Director appointed by the Board; and the RUPA CEO. Mr Bruce Hodgkinson SC was elected as the RUPA’s inaugural Chairman. Bruce brought to the role a vast array of knowledge as a Senior Council in Industrial Law, and a strong understanding of organisational governance as the current Chair of the New South Wales Cancer Council. Bruce was also a former

RUPA President Adam Freier (R) congratulates 2010 RUPA Newcomer of the Year, Pat McCabe.

Chair of the joint RUPA-ARU Player OH&S Committee, one of his many connections to professional and amateur rugby in Australia. Along with Bruce, Wallaby and ARU high performance manager Pat Howard was elected as an Independent Director along with Wallaby legend Jason Little. In both Pat and Jason, the RUPA has been able to acquire an impressive knowledge of the business of rugby and an invaluable insight into the experiences of playing, coaching and administering rugby. With many players moving on, the RUPA player representatives also had some variation with each state having a single representative. The Reds and Force captains - James Horwill and Nathan Sharpe - were elected to represent their states, while former and current Wallaby captains Stirling Mortlock and Rocky Elsom were also elected without contest to represent the Rebels and Brumbies. Daniel Halangahu maintained his position as the Waratah’s representative on the Board.

A special mention must also go to those who commenced 2010 as members of the RUPA Board, and were particularly influential in contributing to the RUPA’s adoption of a new constitution. To Patrick Phibbs, Ben Hand, Morgan Turinui, Van Humphries, Chris O’Young and Tom Hockings, thank you on behalf of the RUPA. Thanks must also go to Omar Hassanein, who served the RUPA outstandingly as the interim-CEO prior to Greg’s appointment. Omar’s dedication and passion for the RUPA is a testament to his character and the RUPA is a far better organisation for his contributions. I would personally also like to thank both Glenys Smith and Rosemary Towner for their conscientious efforts in looking after our players. Whilst there have been many changes within the RUPA - from premises, to staff, direction and governance - our core business remains to represent the players and enforce their rights and entitlements through the Collective Bargaining Agreement.

The RUPA is forever indebted to our many sponsors, partners and supporters. There is no doubt that we would not be in the stable and formidable position that we currently find ourselves in, without your support, passion and generosity. To that end, thanks need to be made to: PKF, Standard Chartered Bank and Link Market Services for your ongoing sponsorship of the RUPA; David Giffin, for his role in assisting with the recruitment process of the CEO; Braham Dabscheck for his evergreen analysis and academic insight into the RUPA’s activities; Garland Hawthorn Brahe for their tireless work in reshaping and resubmitting our constitution; And finally to Campbell Fisher and FCB Group for his significant contributions to the formulating and negotiating of our industrial relations position. The future looks bright for the RUPA – and I look forward to reporting to you next year once more on our progress and achievements – for our members. ADAM FREIER PRESIDENT


CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER’S REPORT No doubt there will be many tests and challenges for the RUPA to address.... I am confident of our capacity to successfully address these challenges and to contribute to the growth and development of Australian Rugby.

In delivering my first report as Chief Executive Officer of the Rugby Union Players’ Association (RUPA) it would be remiss of me if I did not acknowledge the significant contribution which my predecessor, Mr Tony Dempsey, made to the RUPA over an extensive period of time. Tony was responsible for establishing the RUPA for the professional players in Australia. Tony’s passion and enthusiasm in representing the interests of the players were his hallmarks . His contributions to the RUPA and to the game of Rugby were exceptional. On behalf of the current and past professional rugby players I would like wish him well in his future endeavours. Similarly I would like to acknowledge the substantial contribution which former President, Rod Kafer, made to the organization during his 4 year tenure. Rod’s level of intellect and commitment to the RUPA left a very high benchmark for his successors.



Since my appointment in August 2010 there have been many issues on the RUPA agenda. The knowledge and experiences which I had accumulated in my previous portfolios as Executive Director of Sydney University Sport (1993-2007) and Chief Executive Officer of RugbyWA and the Emirates Western Force (2008-2009) were important in addressing the variety and complexity of issue confronting the RUPA in 2010. It was also important for me to quickly enhance my understanding of the RUPA, its structure, culture, relationships and general operations. The organization had already embarked on a program of substantial change, most notably a new constitution and model of corporate governance, and my capacity to assist in the delivery of this would have been very difficult but for the support which I received from my fellow staff and from various Board members.

Matters of primary importance which also required the RUPA’s attention in 2010 included negotiations with the Australian Rugby Union (ARU) on the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), engagement with the International Rugby Players’ Association (IRPA) on player interests at the Rugby World Cup, securing ongoing commercial relationships, the relocation of the RUPA offices and the management of two arbitration disputes. The review of the constitution and the corporate governance model was a rather lengthy process due to the need to undertake extensive consultation with the constituency and to ensure that the best interests of the players were assessed and accommodated in the changes. The statutory requirements of the Companies Act and the conduct of the Board elections also impacted on the capacity of the organization to deliver these changes as quickly as one would have liked to.

2010 RUPA Medal for Excellence Winner, David Pocock.


The RUPA was fortunate to have the support of lawyers Garland Hawthorn Brahe, in particular Brendan Miller, Steve Martin and David King, who provided their services on a pro bono basis in the delivery of the new RUPA Constitution. The RUPA’s thanks go to these gentlemen for their support. I would also like to acknowledge the support received from our sponsor, Link Market Services, with respect to the conduct of the Board elections. My thanks to the outgoing Board members and my congratulations to the members of the new Board. In particular, Chairman, Mr Bruce Hodgkinson SC, and President, Mr Adam Freier. I look forward to working with you both in the development and implementation of policies and strategies to assist in the growth of Rugby and the associated opportunities our membership. In 2009 the RUPA and the ARU were scheduled to begin negotiations on the CBA. At that time it was mutually agreed that the negotiations would be postponed until April 2010. A

further postponement occurred in 2010 as a result of the time required for the RUPA to incorporate its new constitution and model of corporate governance. The fact that the RUPA was not in a position to appoint a new CEO until the second half of 2010 and the need for the RUPA to conduct extensive engagement with its constituency on CBA matters were also responsible for delaying RUPA’s capacity to conduct CBA negotiations in 2010. Whilst the ARU was disappointed with these delays they were unavoidable. The RUPA’s priority was to ensure that the membership was engaged and consulted on CBA matters prior to entering into any negotiations. Integral to this process was the conduct of a two day CBA Strategic Planning Conference in December 2010. Several player representatives from each Super Rugby Team were in attendance and they benefited immensely from the presentations and discussions which were provided by various industry experts.

2011 Rebels’ recruit and Welsh International, Gareth Delve.



The outcomes from the conference provided the RUPA with a sound policy platform and established a set of core objectives for the CBA negotiations to be conducted in 2011. The agreed objectives were: • Ensuring that Australian Rugby is a highly competitive force in world rugby across its three major assets, the Wallabies, Super Rugby and Sevens Rugby; • Achieving greater productivity, and cost effectiveness at the professional level of the game by the efficient allocation of resources; • Regulating those aspects of the game which create uncertainty and unpredictability and thereby reducing the potential for dispute between the ARU and the RUPA; • Ensuring that Australian Rugby’s professional players enjoy employment conditions that are favourable to that of our domestic and international competitors in the athlete marketplace;

• Achieving a fair and equitable distribution of Australian Rugby revenues within the respective labour sectors of Australian Rugby, (players, coaches, administrators) which recognises the unique competitive dynamics of the player labour market where competition not only comes from within the rugby code but also from alternative games; • Acknowledging that there are greater upward pressures, both domestically and internationally, on player market costs than any of the other labour sectors in Australian Rugby; and • Establishing an industry leading workplace environment, thereby creating conditions enabling the players to perform at their optimum. The RUPA has received exceptional support from our workplace law consultants, the FCB Group, in particular Managing Partner and Solicitor Director, Campbell Fisher, in preparing for the CBA negotiations. The advice and support which the RUPA has received from Campbell and his colleagues have been a critical to the RUPA’s capacity to effectively represent the players in the forthcoming CBA negotiations in 2011. The RUPA has also been fortunate to have had access to the knowledge and advice of experienced industrial relations and sports law consultant and academic, Braham Dabscheck in our CBA preparations. Not all of the RUPA’s activities have been focused on player workplace conditions and entitlements and activities of a political nature. In December 2010 the RUPA conducted the Annual Awards Lunch at The Ivy.

It would be fair to say that the event was a success and thanks must go to all those involved, especially the staff, Glenys Smith and Rosemary Towner.I would also like to acknowledge the hosts, Phil Kearns and James O’Connor as well as our special guest Rhys Muldoon. Congratulations to the 2010 recipients of the prestigious RUPA Player Awards. The Newcomer of the Year Award – Brumby, Patrick McCabe and the Medal for Excellence Award – the Western Force’s David Pocock. Two superb role models demonstrating excellence both on and off the field.

Top:Kieran Longbottom. Bottom: The Brumbies Doorknock Appeal.

2011 promises to be an exciting year for Rugby in the southern hemisphere. The introduction of the expanded Super Rugby Competition, more local derbies, the entry a new team in the Melbourne Rebels and the Rugby World Cup to be played in New Zealand, provide the game in Australia with great opportunities to regain lost ground in the domestic sporting market-place.


The RUPA continues to play a prominent role in the international rugby players arena. In November 2010 on behalf of the RUPA I attended a two-day IRPA conference in London. On the second day of the conference player representatives from the majority of the Tier 1 rugby nations were present at a meeting with representatives of the Rugby World Cup (RWC) and the International Rugby Board (IRB). The Australian player representatives at the Conference were Rocky Elsom and Stephen Moore. At this meeting a number of matters were raised including the economic model for the Rugby World Cup, the funding and development of national rugby player associations in less developed rugby economies and the development of a more rigorous relationship between IRPA and the IRB. No doubt these matters will continue to be at the forefront of international player rugby discussions in 2011. The 2009/2010 Financial Statements for the RUPA reflect that the organisation has undergone a relatively difficult year. Unbudgeted expenses such as the relocation of the offices with associated make good and removal costs, group insurance recoveries paid to the ARU, legal costs incurred via arbitration matters and extraordinary staff and consultancy costs have had a negative impact on the 2010 RUPA accounts. I remain confident that the RUPA will be in a sound long term financial position. The two core business activities of the RUPA are the employment and workplace conditions of the players and the educational opportunities and welfare support which the RUPA provides to them. The capacity of the RUPA to deliver on these responsibilities is dependent upon the resources which the organisation has available to it.

Top: Nathan Sharpe was a key figure for the Force in 2010. Bottom: RUPA Awards Lunch MC’s James O’Connor and Phil Kearns welcome guests to the Ivy Ballroom.



The majority of these financial resources are supplied to the RUPA by the rugby bodies in Australia, most notably the ARU, who undoubtedly are the RUPA’s major business partner. The scope and detail of this relationship is principally defined in the Collective Bargaining Agreement. It is highly desirable that the ARU and the RUPA endeavour to ensure that their relationship is at all times cooperative and productive. The common goal is the health of the game of Rugby in Australia and we need to work together in order to achieve this. Since my appointment there have been a number of discussions with the ARU on matters such as the CBA negotiations where there is a divergence of opinion between the two organisations. Both parties have their respective positions and have a responsibility to support what they think is in the best interests of the game. It is important that the RUPA and the ARU at all times maintain a respect for each other and display a cooperative approach to the challenges which confront our game. I would like to acknowledge the support of the various members

New Rebels’ recruit, Jarrod Saffy.

of the ARU and Super Rugby team management and staff who I personally, and the RUPA staff, deal with on a regular basis and thank them for the professional and supportive manner in which we have been able to conduct business since my appointment.

form the backbone of the RUPA. The organisation is indeed fortunate to have people who have such dedication and passion for the interests of the players. The staff make a considerable contribution to the RUPA culture and they are to be congratulated on this. No doubt there will be many tests and challenges for the Players’ Association to address in 2011 and beyond. I am confident of the RUPA’s capacity to successfully address these challenges and to contribute to the growth and development of Rugby in the Australian and international sporting landscape.

The RUPA’s capacity to fulfil its responsibilities to the players is dependent upon the support which it receives from a variety of external partners. A number of these I have referred to earlier in this report. Some others who I would like to acknowledge include, PKF Chartered Accountants & Business Advisors, Link Market Services Air Pacific, The Wine GREG HARRIS Society, Standard Chartered Bank, The CEO Trans Tasman Business Circle and the many RUPA educational partners who are covered in more detail elsewhere in this report. On a personal note I would like to thank the RUPA staff, in particular, Omar Hassanein, Rosemary Towner and Glynis Smith for the support and assistance which they have provided to me since my appointment. Together with the PACD staff located at each of the Super Rugby teams these people

Top: RUPA CEO, Greg Harris. Bottom: Soseni Anesi in action, off the field.


PLAYER SERVICES REPORT 2010 has been another year full of activities for the Player Services and Operations area of the RUPA with the development and implementation of several new initiatives.

Notable achievements include the continued success of the Player Agent Accreditation Scheme (PAAS) with positive feedback from the survey of the agents in relation to the conduct of the PAAS. The Occupational Health and Safety Committee has also been committed to managing a number of new initiatives, including playing surface protocols, heat guidelines and concussion. Other significant activities in 2010 included the successful conduct in conjunction with the ARU of the John Eales Medal Dinner, the RUPA Annual Awards Lunch and the Super 14 Tipping Competition. Advice to players occurred on a wide variety of matters including, contracting issues, superannuation, career- ending insurance, long service leave entitlements, contract upgrades, and retirement funds.



Agent Accreditation Scheme In 2010 there were 67 Accredited Agents, whose activities are regulated under the RUPA Agent Accreditation Scheme. All Agents were obliged to comply with the following requirements: • Compulsory attendance of a professional development workshop. In total, 3 workshops were conducted; two were conducted in Sydney and one in Brisbane; • Completed and passed a multiple choice exam on a variety of player issues; • To have in place Professional Indemnity Insurance; and • Paid the relevant annual registration fee. In order to ensure that all current and future professional players were informed on the roles and responsibilities of the agents under the AAS the RUPA delivered a number of player presentations in 2010.

The RUPA made presentations to the Australian Schoolboys, the respective Super Rugby Academies, Super 14 Squads and Wallabies. Ongoing education amongst ARU and State Union contracting managers has also assisted in ensuring continued cooperation by all involved. The members of the RUPA Agent Accreditation Board were Chairman, Warwick McDonald, RUPA appointee Braham Dabscheck and ARU appointee, John Langford . The Board met on several occasions and their conscientious work ensured the ongoing credibility and success of the PAAS. The PAAS continues to develop and implement new initiatives with the results of the surveys conducted amongst the agents and players providing testimony to its success. On behalf of the RUPA I would like to thank the Board for their efforts in 2010.

Stirling Mortlock’s Brumbies farewell.

Player Occupational Health & Safety The player Occupational Health & Safety Committee (OH&SC) met on a bi-monthly basis in 2010with a charter of responsibility for all aspects of player health and safety. The 2010 OH&S Committee members included, Mr Bruce Hodgkinson SC (Independent Chair), ARU representatives Mr David Nucifora, Mr Scott Bowen, and Dr Warren McDonald and RUPA representatives Dr Seamus Dalton, Mr Benn Robinson and Mr Omar Hassanein. The committee discussed a variety of relevant OH&S issues in 2010. Of particular note were the following: • Following significant consultation and consideration a set of protocols to deal with unsafe playing surfaces were developed and implemented. These were successfully implemented at all National and Super Rugby level matches during season 2010; • The medical practitioners on the Committee sought advice from

leading experts and outcomes and recommendations from conferences conducted on head knocks and incidents of player concussion. This information and the IRB recommendations were utilized for the development of policy. • Heat Guidelines were established and continued to be enforced with correspondence forwarded to all State Unions prior to summer training. An emphasis placed on planning and proper scheduling of matches and training sessions to ensure that players were not exposed to extreme heat conditions In late 2010, the Chairman, Mr Bruce Hodgkinson SC, resigned and it was agreed that his replacement would be Mr Gerard Phillips. Player Insurance Policy Once again in 2010 The RUPA on behalf of the players and the ARU was responsible for sourcing and negotiating the renewal of a Group Insurance Policy to provide insurance coverage to all players in the event of a

career ending injury. The significance of this Policy is that it covers players against all career ending injuries provided the injury is proven to be ‘one off’ and non-degenerative. Unfortunately as a result of the large number of previous claims the maximum payout figures in 2010 for Career Ending Injuries of $50,000 or $35,000 for those over 30, were not as substantial as in previous years. Whilst these were the best terms available due to the claims history of the policy and the level of premiums which the ARU was prepared to commit this created widespread disapproval from the player group. Without doubt a major strategic objective for the RUPA in 2011 will be for a more rigorous and extensive level of coverage to be provided to members than that which was provided in 2010. This will require substantial research and negotiations with both insurance brokers and the ARU. It is essential that it be part of the upcoming CBA negotiations.


Awards 2010 JOHN EALES MEDAL The John Eales Medal was held once again in October in conjunction with ARU. The award is voted on a 3-2-1 basis by every Qantas Wallaby over the 15 Tests stretching from the 2009 Spring Tour of Europe until the end of the Bundaberg Red Tri Nations.

front of fellow Wallaby finalists: Nathan Sharpe, Quade Cooper, Adam Ashley Cooper and Will Genia. By winning the Rugby Medal for Excellence, Pocock took out the trifecta of awards, having already won the 2010 John Eales medal as well as the People’s Choice Award Events

David Pocock was a worthy winner of this coveted award. The top five in the voting for this year were: • David Pocock (269 votes) • Matt Giteau (193 votes) • Quade Cooper (146 votes) • Rocky Elsom (138 votes) • Kurtley Beale (138 votes)

THE RUPA FINALS LUNCHEON The RUPA hosted its second annual Finals Luncheon in May at the WatersEdge, with an intimate group of 170 Rugby supporters joined by Wallaby and Super Rugby players including Quade Cooper, Stephen Hoiles and Pat Phibbs.

David was also successful in winning the People’s Choice Player of the Year.

ARU representatives Ron Graham and Peter Friend were also in attendance.

THE RUPA AWARDS LUNCHEON The RUPA Awards Luncheon was conducted on December 16th at Ivy Lounge Sydney, with 250 people in attendance. The event was sponsored by HSBC Bank Australia Limited, SCG Trust and PKF, with Phil Kearns and James O’Connor hosting the day. Awards went to David Pocock in claiming the main prize, whilst the Newcomer award went to Brumbies fullback Pat McCabe. Super 14 Tipping Comp In 2010 the RUPA once again conducted the very popular Air Pacific/ RUPA Super 14 Tipping Competition. Congratulates to Josh Holmes and Nick Stiles on winning their respective current and past player categories. Final results were: (Present / Past)

2010 RUPA MEDAL FOR EXCELLENCE After being voted the runner up in the RUPA Medal for Excellence for the past two years running it was a case of third time lucky for David Pocock. Pocock took out the coveted award in

The lunch was hosted by the Fox Sports commentary team, Greg Clarke, Rod Kafer and Phil Kearns. It included a preview of the four semi-finalists of the Super 14, as well as an analysis of each of the Australian teams and how they fared in the 2010 competition.

1st Josh Holmes / Nick Stiles 2nd Tom Carter / Andrew Blades 3rd Ben Hand / Andrew Farley Josh and Nick’s prize for winning the competition was a holiday for

(L-R) Rod Kafer, Phil Kearns and Greg Clark dissect the action and entertain the crowd at the 2010 RUPA Finals Lunch.


2 people to Fiji was courtesy of Air Pacific and Fiji Visitors Bureau. During his time in Fiji the winner hosts a clinic for the locals promoting Rugby in the community. Josh now joins the illustrious RUPA Tipping Comp honour roll of Adam Freier, Drew Mitchell, Rocky Elsom, Nathan Grey, Shaun Berne and Tim Donnelly. Website and Newsletter The RUPA’s website continued to be a more informative and functional website for the membership through the expansion of the content available. The website has also become a popular and useful resource for the public with close to 3000 people subscribing to the RUPA news and updates. The RUPA’s electronic newsletter “The Breakdown” continues to grow in distribution with players offering regular stories and reports from behind the scenes. Communication with the membership on key topics has been enhanced through this platform. Please visit the website to see the latest at Members’ Benefits The RUPA continued to expand the range of discounts and benefits offered to its members. Benefit partners include: Travel Sim, Merida Cycles, Rudy Project Eyewear and 1car1 rentals. Existing benefits still remain available to players including discounts on HSBC home loans and credit cards, Sony products, Callaway Golf, Glue Store, Barbeques Galore, Hardy Bros Jewellers, Wildfire and Ocean Room restaurants, HCF health insurance, Carpac motor vehicles and Wridgeways Removalist Services. OMAR HASSANEIN GENERAL MANAGER – PLAYER SERVICES AND OPERATIONS Clockwise from top: David Pocock meets the press, Nathan Charles in full stride, Quade Cooper and David Pocock on centre stage at the RUPA Awards Lunch, and RUPA General Manager - Player Services & Operations Omar Hassanein.


PERSONAL & CAREER DEVELOPMENT REPORT PACD Mission: To provide nationally consistent services which will assist Rugby Union Players to undertake education, vocation and personal development opportunities whilst pursuing and achieving excellence in professional Rugby Union.

The PACD is a joint program of the ARU and the RUPA and aims to provide consistent support and services to Players in their off field endeavours. Our mission is: To provide nationally consistent services which will assist Rugby Union Players to undertake education, vocation and personal development opportunities whilst pursuing and achieving excellence in professional Rugby Union. Staffing • Rosemary Towner National Player Development Manager • Lachlan McBain PACD Advisor, NSW Waratahs • Gary Speckman Chaplain, NSW Waratahs • Sue Crawford PACD Advisor, ACT Brumbies • David McDonald Chaplain, ACT Brumbies • Sam Coen PACD Advisor, Qld Reds • Andy Gourlay Chaplain, Qld Reds



• Gavin Williams PACD Advisor, Western Force Both Matthew Phelps (NSW) and James Holbeck (Qld) moved on to different roles in 2010. We thank them for their contribution to the development of the PACD and wish them well with their endeavours. PACD Update A list of courses delivered to Super 14 and Academy players co-ordinated and delivered through the PACD in 2010 is listed below: • Diploma in Business Management • Anti-Vilification sessions • Financial planning – budgeting • Financial planning – investments/ stock market • Financial planning – property investment • Financial planning – Wealth Creation strategies • Cert III & Cert IV (Fitness) • Level 1 Coaching • Senior First Aid • Career options in Real Estate • Public Speaking

• Presentation Skills – small group • Intensive 1:1 presentation skills • Media awareness and skills • Personal Branding • Brand Building • Leadership Development • Study Skills • Goal setting • Local issues and safety • Men’s Health and wellbeing • Building your network • Embracing professionalism • Cooking for performance Cybersecurity The PACD developed and delivered Guidelines in relation to Facebook Security and Twitter usage to ensure players are aware of potential issues and protected from inappropriate use of the technology. Players at this years Induction Camp also received a briefing on Cybersecurity across all areas including internet banking, website security and social networking media.

Western Force players ‘cross-training’ at a Force community day.

Elite Athlete Friendly Universities (EAFU) The ARU/RUPA PACD continued to represent all professional sports on the EAFU Committee. This committee discusses university policy and service delivery models and how they impact upon the professional player. The EAFU network provides support to players and allows such things as extensions on assignments to suit playing schedules and the sitting of exams at convenient locations. All members of the network are thanked and congratulated for their input into the careers of professional players. Anti-Vilification This program, developed in conjunction with the Anti Discrimination Board, focuses around racial issues in sport and their affect on the game, the player and wider community. All staff are trained in the delivery of the program.

Welfare and Counselling The personal welfare and wellbeing of the Players and their partners continued to be supported by the RUPA’s Chaplains. A proactive framework of support was developed by the PACD and agreed to by Super 14 Team Managers in order to provide proactive support to players who may require specialist support in the area of men’s wellbeing. Relationships Australia also maintained their long standing support of the PACD through their continued role providing a confidential counselling service to players and their partners. Relationships Australia provides experts in areas such as gambling, alcohol, grief, dealing with separation and divorce. Individual support for players in need in relation to any aspect of their off field life was also provided either inhouse or via external experts in the field.

Sam Wykes shows the kids how it’s done & Brumbies’ support OzHarvest (below).


New entrants to Super Rugby, the Melbourne Rebels, assembled for the first time in October 2010.

Cambridge/Oxford Scholarships There were no applicants for Scholarship this year. Previous scholarship winners include: • Ed Carter (Cambridge) • Adam Magro (Oxford) • Jason Reilly (Cambridge) • Joe Roff (Oxford) • Daniel Vickerman (Cambridge) / Daniel Guinness (Oxford) • Marty Wilson Newcomer of the Year Award The Newcomers Award is provided to that first year player who has contributed at the highest level ‘on field’ and had outstanding success in his off field endeavours. Nominations are received from ARU/RUPA PACD Advisors in each state and the winner selected by the RUPA board.



The winner of the Award in 2010 Pat McCabe (ACT Brumbies). Pat joins previous winners of the Newcomer of the Year Award Berrick Barnes (2006 Qld Reds) and David Pocock (2007 Western Force), Ben Lucas (2008 Qld Reds), Laurie Weeks (2009 Qld Reds). Induction Camp Twenty three (23) Players (7 x Qld Red, 6 x Brumbies, 5 x Western Force and 5 x Waratah) attended the 8th Annual Professional Rugby Players’ Induction Camp. As is now tradition, Chris Alcock (Waratahs) attended the opening session and spoke to attendees about his experiences last year. Thoughout the camp, various guests and specialist presented attended and worked with players to develop their off field skills and interests.

PACD Chairman, Phil Kearns once again inspired the group with his enthusiasm for the program. This year, Phil was joined by fellow Wallaby, James Holbeck highlighted to the players the importance of preparing for life after finishing playing Rugby and provided the opportunity for Players to consider many options available to them. Players participated in various workshops including financial management, etiquette and media training. A Corporate Linking lunch gave the opportunity for attendees to discuss their industries of interest and career pathways with a panel made up of James Holbeck, Fergal Barry (Arthritis Australia), Andrew Sisley (Leader3), During the camp, players built three (3) bikes which were donated to The Smith Family.

Financial Planning


Final note

Eligible players were provided with an initial briefing with financial specialists PKF. They were provided with budgeting, taxation and general planning information.

Through the year, the following presentations were made by the PACD program:-

Thank you to:

Training & Education Funding Since its inception in 2001, the PACD has provided RUPA members with the opportunity to access funds through the Training & Education (T&E) Scheme. Players have used the funds to undertake a range of opportunities including tertiary and post graduate studies and TAFE Diplomas. Funding distributed in 2010, for expenses incurred in 2009, totalled $254,737.74. It was provided to 65 RUPA members at an average of $3,923.55 per player.

• RUPA Agent Accreditation workshops • NSW Rugby Board • WA Rugby Board • Western Force - Force 15 Mentor group • Curtin University final year Sports Administration/Commerce students; • EAFU National Conference • MBF Forward Pack (Western Force) • NTS Squads (and parents) • Australian Schoolboy championships (and parents).

• All of the PACD Career and Education Advisors – Sue Crawford (Brumbies), Matt Phelps/Lachie McBain (Waratahs), James Holbeck/ Sam Coen (Reds) and Gavin Willams (Western Force) for their continued dedication and support this year; • Without these staff Players would not be able to access expert career and education advice from people passionate about player needs;


• All staff of the RUPA and the ARU for their ongoing support of the PACD program; and

The ARU/RUPA PACD acknowledges the support of:

• Phil Kearns for his passion and commitment to the PACD program.

• PKF • Real Estate Institute of Queensland • Real Estate Institute of NSW • Individual trainers and providers in each state


Top: The Waratahs supporting the kids and the community. Right: RUPA National Player Development Manager, Rosemary Towner.


AROUND THE GROUNDS While they might give significant time and effort to their on-field performance and preparations, there’s plenty happening off the field for the players’ to be proud of.

The crowd celebrate with Matt Hodgson.




The CA Brumbies got behind Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month during February. Members of the side donned teal ribbons to help raise awareness of ovarian cancer ahead of Teal Ribbon Day in February. RUPA members are keen to get the message to the community that the disease does not just impact on women and it is important men are educated on the support available. CA Brumbies flyhalf Matt Toomua encouraged the players and public to get behind the awareness initiative.

“The CA Brumbies are happy to help a cause that provides widespread and invaluable assistance.”

clothing vouchers to those people in our community who are really struggling. In 2010 OzHarvest was the number one ticket holder of the CA Technologies Brumbies. The CA Technologies Brumbies wore a new yellow sock when they took on the Queensland Reds in 2010 to raise cash and awareness for their No 1 ticket holders OzHarvest Canberra. OzHarvest Canberra Manager Dave Burnet said he was thrilled with the support the CA Technologies Brumbies had shown his charity. “The support we have received from the CA Technologies Brumbies has been fantastic, the club has really made a huge effort to help OzHarvest and we are always thankful for everything they do for us,” Burnet said.

The CA Technologies Brumbies also instituted a primary school visitation program, Buddy a Brumby. and approximately 15 schools formed part of this program. Players attended the schools on 2 -3 occasions during the course of the season. In addition the CA Technologies Brumbies supported the following organisations as match day charity partners: • MensLink; • Lifeline; • SnowyHydro Southcare; • YWCA; • Medicare organ donation; • The Children’s Medical Research Institute; and • Ronald McDonald House Charities. SUE CRAWFORD

CA Brumbies Mitchell Chapman and Henry Vanderglas joined emergency relief volunteers from the St Vincent De Paul Society to demonstrate how funds raised by the Society’s annual Doorknock appeal help people in desperate need. The CA Brumbies are happy to help a cause that provides widespread and invaluable assistance such as emergency accommodation, food and The Brumbies supporting Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month.



Supporting Ronald McDonald House Emirates Western Force players visited Ronald McDonald House and put their culinary skills on show alongside chefs from Burswood Entertainment Complex to help whip-up a gourmet meal for the residents on Friday night. Pek Cowan, Brett Sheehan and Mark Swanepoel were joined by new recruits Tevita Metuisela, Rory Sidey and Pat Dellit at Ronald McDonald House in Subiaco. While happy to pitch-in and help where needed it was quickly decided that the cooking be left to the experts and the players mingled with the kids and parents staying at the House. The kids thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the Force players and spent much of the evening playing in the yard, getting autographs and posing for a photos. With the meal ready to go the players jumped back into the kitchen and served up the delicious feast which was brilliantly prepared by a number of Burswood chefs. Athlete’s As Role Models Tour The Athletes as Role Models tour aims to ‘enrich the lives and encourage the dreams’ of indigenous youth in remote Northern Territory. Working with the issues identified by community leaders ARM tour aims to support positive

lifestyle choices, build self-esteem and encourage active participation in sport and education. RUPA promoted the opportunity to be involved in this tour to the players and of the several who expressed interest Joelin Rapana from the Western force was selected. Prior to departing Joelin participated in a preparation course to learn about culture, expectations and traditions within the communities the tour would be visiting. He then travelled to Papunya, approximately 280kms NW of Alice in centre of Tanamine Desert which was an eye opening experience for the rookie rugby player. The 5 day tour included speaking to the children about healthy living

through exercise and a healthy diet. The role models also encouraged them to pursue their interests and an education to give them the best possible chance in life. When Joelin was asked what difference the tour had made to him he responded “It has given me a greater appreciation of Australia Indigenous people and has helped to understand the complexities and challenges they face. My favourite part was serving the kids breakfast in the morning, they were incredibly grateful and it is something I will always remember for the rest of my life. I encourage any other player who has this opportunity to put their hand up and be involved”. GAVIN WILLIAMS

Top: Force players support the Emergency Department of Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital.




One of the priorities for the Melbourne Rebels coaching and recruiting staff was to secure players who had a genuine interest to engage with the local Victorian and rugby community. The 5 Star Engagement Program is the name of this strategy and it requires each player to be affiliated with a club, school, charity and business within Victoria.

“This will provide them invaluable skills for their future careers”

Two players’ have been allocated to each club and school from far and wide across Victoria to ensure maximum exposure for rugby, and it is hoped that each player will find time to help out at training and attend important events such as season launches, presentation nights and game day to show their support. In fact a number of players were able to attend the VRU grand final after only being in Melbourne for a handful of weeks, and numerous players also attended season wind ups in November & December.

In addition to this, four team charities have been selected for the upcoming season, but players have also been encouraged to continue working with charities that they already support, or to seek new charities in Melbourne. The four team charities for the 2011 season are Mission Australia, Ovarian Cancer, Hearts in Union and Murdoch Children’s Research Institute. Before the Christmas break players were able to get out and support the following charity events: • Canteen Bandana Day • Prince Henry Medical Research Dinner • Royal Children’s Hospital Visit • Myer Santa Parade In the realm of business, each player and their partners will benefit from the significant business networks that the Rebels Community will provide. Through sponsors, the Weary Dunlop Rugby Club and VRU links, each player will be given the opportunity to link with a business, in the field of their choice. This will provide them invaluable skills for their future careers, as well as providing unprecedented access for our corporate leaders to tap into the Rebels players’ profile. CAMERON YORKE

International Rebels Greg Somerville (L) and Gareth Delve (R) with coach Rod McQueen.



Movember In 2010, The Queensland Reds supported Movember by competing against each other for the best ‘Mo’ at Ballymore. Movember team captain James Hanson described the month as a thoroughly enjoyable experience and thanked those who got behind both the players and the worthy Movember initiative.

Joining Hanson in growing mo’s was teammates Albert Anae, Liam Gill, Greg Holmes, Ed Quirk, Radike Samo, Dom Shipperley, Kimami Sitauti and Lei Tomiki. “The Reds boys really got behind the campaign, so to see the support of fans and to raise a decent total is extremely rewarding for everyone,” Hanson said. “We all had a great time doing it and raising funds for charity - I’m sure you will see numbers grow next year.”

Indigenous Community Visits 2010 saw the introduction of a The Queensland Rugby Indigenous Program. Central to the delivery of this program was sending Reds players to remote communities to teach them lessons in broad social issues including lifestyle and health choices, importance of education and goal setting.

“ see the support [from our] fans and to raise a decent total is extremely rewarding for everyone.” Players including Jake Schatz, Greg Holmes and Will Chambers travelled to isolated communities of Doomadgee and Mornington Island to work with the children and families of the area “I talked to them about how important it was for me, and now them, to get a good education so they can grow up and become team leaders” said Will. SAM COEN

The Reds mob Anthony Faingaa after a five pointer.




Community involvement is something that is an important facet of being a Waratah. The team, as well as the organisation, are well aware that community support is paramount to the success of the team and as such are more than happy to give back to the rugby community as well as the wider community.

“Having seen the way the boys get involved when they are there, it is sometimes easy to forget which ones are the kids”

2nd year of this initiative where the team wear unique jerseys that are then signed and auctioned off. Funds raised from this initiative go towards rebuilding the Cerebral Palsy Alliance headquarters in Allambie Heights after it was destroyed by fire in 2007 as well as creating a state-of-the-art physiotherapy and treatment centre for kids who suffer from Cerebral Palsy The auctioning of these jerseys raised around $40K and combined with other fundraising efforts such as the sale of commemorative hats and the donation of proceeds from the match day program amongst others raised the total raised to $94,839. The other charity that is heavily supported by the boys at the Waratahs is the Starlight Foundation.

Led by Ben Mowen, who can be found on many a training free day at the Starlight Room at the Children’s Hospital in Randwick, the boys enjoy their trips to visit these sick kids. The Starlight Room is a room where the kids get to forget about why they are in hospital and gives them a chance to be kids. Having seen the way the boys get involved when they are there, it is sometimes easy to forget which ones are the kids. The boys love getting stuck in having their hair and nails painted or dressing up or even busting some moves or some tunes on the Nintendo Wii. The boys officially visit the Starlight room every month with many of the boys going in their own time as well. LACHLAN MCBAIN

2010 saw the boys make nearly 50 hours of appearances at rugby clubs and various community activities around the state. Predominantly at junior clubs the Waratahs are regularly giving their time to help junior clubs by just turning up to sign a few autographs and cook the BBQ or even fundraise by being the prize for a kicking clinic or coaching a session. Season 2010 saw the Waratahs support two major charities in their own different way. Firstly there was the charity match raising funds for Cerebral Palsy Alliance against the Hurricanes in Round 14. 2010 was the Drew Mitchell at the Starlight Foundation


INTERNATIONAL RUGBY PLAYERS’ ASSOCIATION The International Rugby Players’ Association (IRPA) was founded in 2001 to promote, advance and protect international interests of professional rugby players.

IRPA is the professional player’s representative body on international issues of importance to the players and the game of rugby. The members of the IRPA are the respective player associations from: • Argentina; • Australia; • England; • France; • Ireland; • New Zealand; • South Africa; and • Wales. The formal document which details the relationship between the International Rugby Board (IRB) and IRPA is the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed between the two bodies on October 15, 2007. In 2010 the IRPA was involved in discussions with the IRB on a number of key international rugby matters.

• Player Image Rights; • Illegal and Foul Play Regulations; • International Player Eligibility Regulations; • World Sevens Program; and • Anti-Doping.

is, the IRPA’s position that model is fundamentally flawed as it does not appropriately recognise the commercial contributions made by the National Unions and Team Members/ Players.

In 2010, the IRPA Board conducted regular conference calls and met twice in person. In the first half of 2010 a board meeting was conducted in South Africa which acting Chief Executive Officer, Omar Hassanein, attended as the RUPA’s representative. In November 2010 a two day IRPA Conference was conducted in London, which Chief Executive Officer, Greg Harris, attended on behalf of the RUPA.

The significance of this matter has now been recognised by the IRB and the National Unions and is to be addressed at an international rugby conference to be conducted in 2011.

The second day of the London conference involved a meeting with the IRB and RWC representatives at which each member association was invited to have two players in attendance. At this meeting the Wallabies were represented by Stephen Moore and Rocky Elsom.

These included: • IRB and Rugby World Cup Financial Models;



The major topic discussed at this meeting was the financial model for the Rugby World Cup. It was, and

The IRPA continues to play an important role in representing the interests of the RUPA membership on international rugby matters which in turn have a significant impact on the rugby workplace environment in Australia. It is appropriate to acknowledge the substantial time and effort which the IRPA Chairman, Damian Hopley, and the Executive Director, Rob Nichol, have expended in representing the interests of the international rugby players and express the RUPA’s gratitude for this. GREG HARRIS

AUSTRALIAN ATHLETES’ ALLIANCE The Australian Athletes’ Alliance Inc. (AAA), was established in 2007 and is the peak body of associations representing Australian athletes.

In 2010, the AAA members were: • Australian Cricketers’ Association; • AFL Players’ Association; • Australian Jockeys’ Association; • Australian Netballers’ Association; • Australian Swimmers’ Association; • Professional Footballers’ Association; • Rugby League Players’ Association; & • Rugby Union Players’ Association. The activities of the AAA span across a variety of player related issues, some of which include: taxation policy; player insurance; agent accreditation; gambling; illicit drugs; & anti-doping. The RUPA and its membership have benefited extensively from the collective representation which the AAA provides on issues affecting the interests of athletes. In 2009 a significant achievement was recorded in the High Court decision to permit professional athletes to claim their agents fees legitimate income tax deductions. Currently the AAA is conducting a similar test tax case on professional athletes claiming private medical

insurance as a legitimate income tax deduction. The AAA has also received support from its membership to pursue consideration of registration of the AAA Under the Fair Work (Registered Organizations) Act 2009.

Union, Soccer, Netball and Swimming. Overall the report provided each respective athlete association with invaluable background material for any future collective bargaining agreement negotiations.

The AAA delivered to the constituency two significant initiatives in 2010. Firstly, the engagement of academic, Braham Dabscheck, to undertake a comprehensive study into “ The Linkage Between Player Payments and Benefits to Revenue Sharing in Australian Sport “. This report was a landmark investigation into the extent to which players in different sports had shared in the prosperity of those respective sports. It also provided international benchmarks through an examination of the economies of professional team sports across continents.

One very relevant quote from the report was that ‘ Players as actors are both the machinery and the product... It is not just that athletes are part of the game: They are the game ‘.

The report analyzed data over the last five years, on revenue generated, payment to players and revenue shares; and various arrangements concerning image rights , intellectual property and licensing in Australian Football, Rugby League, Cricket, Rugby

The second initiative was the 2010 Continuing Legal Education Conference on ‘ Resolving Athlete Disputes within the Sporting Framework ‘. This was an excellent educational opportunity and forum for the discussion of strategies, practices and procedures with regards to the resolution of workplace disputes concerning professional athletes. Presentations were provided by a variety of legal and industry experts with the key note address delivered by the Hon. Rob Hulls MP, Deputy Premier, Attorney- General, Minister for Racing. GREG HARRIS


Thanking our Sponsors & Partners

THIS IMAGE: The Wallabies celebrate their winning of the Mandela Cup, September 2010. This report is copyrighted by The Rugby Union Players’ Association Incorporated 2011. All images courtesy of the: ARU, ACT Brumbies, Western Force, Melbourne

NSIDE FRONT COVER IMAGE: The Wallabies sing the national anthem before taking on the English at Twickenham. Rebels, Queensland Reds & NSW Waratahs. Additional copies of this report are available by request to: and online at

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RUPA 2010 Annual Report  

RUPA 2010 Annual Report

RUPA 2010 Annual Report  

RUPA 2010 Annual Report