Coronavirus: Rugby Australia CEO takes 50 per cent pay cut

By Sports Desk March 30, 2020

Rugby Australia CEO Raelene Castle has taken a 50 per cent pay cut as part of cost-saving measures during the coronavirus pandemic.

On Monday, RA reported a provisional deficit of 9.4million Australian dollars in 2019, largely due to the expense of the Rugby World Cup, fewer home Test matches, and higher extra expenditures such as the Israel Folau settlement.

With rugby competitions on hold due to the threat of COVID-19, RA finances are set to take a greater hit due to the loss of matchday and broadcast revenue.

Castle confirmed on Monday that she will be reducing her salary by AUD400,000, while the rest of her executive team will take 30 per cent pay cuts for at least the next three months.

It is anticipated players may now accept similar salary cuts while the pandemic continues.

Justin Harrison, CEO of the Rugby Union Players' Association (RUPA), said: "As a playing group, the members take an indication that pay cuts of between 30 and 50 per cent are considered adequate to help nurse the game through this crisis.

"Our fear was deeper cuts might be needed and that the game was in a financial black hole."

Castle explained: "It's important that we keep Rugby Australia, Super [Rugby] teams and other member unions all in a financially viable situation over the next three months to make sure any decisions we make going forward for rugby in this country will be made with time, with the accurate financial information, and we can make any of those decisions calmly and in a considered way knowing that we've got certainties for at least the next three months.

"Those decisions are significant, and we will continue to work closely with government and with COMPPS [Coalition of Major Professional and Participation Sports] around how an industry package for sport might be developed for all of sport.

"We're in constant dialogue with government around any financial situation we find ourselves in and that we might have for additional loans for grants or loan facilities."

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