Thousands rally against Western Force cull

Thousands of Western Force fans have rallied in Perth against the Super Rugby club’s axing, with billionaire backer Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest warning the battle is far from over.

Rugby WA is expected to learn on Wednesday whether it will be granted the right to appeal the Australian Rugby Union’s decision in the NSW Supreme Court.

About 4500 people rallied outside Rugby WA headquarters on Sunday to show their support, with Forrest again slamming the ARU’s move to cull the Force as lacking financial merit and even hinting the Force could play elsewhere if unsuccessful.

“We will not stand by. If the Super (Rugby) league, the ARU, want to run a process that is not based on merit, that is based on the lucky draw card of where you happen to live or where you happen to support your sport, then we will start our own international league from here,” Forrest told the cheering crowd.

“This is absolutely not the end of the Western Force, it is not the end of rugby in Western Australia. Win or lose the appeal, we will get stronger.”

The other two teams culled from Super Rugby for next season, South Africa’s Cheetahs and Kings, have survived by joining Europe’s Pro 14 competition which has the advantage of falling in their time zone.

However it’s believed RugbyWA has no current plans to seek another international competition for the Force as it awaits an appeal bid outcome.

Former Rugby WA chairman Geoff Stooke resigned from the ARU board this month in protest at the decision to cut the Force..

He was making no predictions about the Supreme Court appeal attempt but warned the ARU was facing a significant damages claim from WA government.

“If it goes our way, we’ll move on. If it’s doesn’t, the legal action will move on,” said Stooke.

“The (state) government is seeking compensation for the massive investment in facilities they’ve made for us.

“They clearly made those investments in the expectation the Force was a permanent part of the WA sporting landscaping.”

* All Offers and Promotions posted in this article excludes NSW residents.
Stay up to date with the latest sports news
Follow our social accounts to get exclusive content and all the latest sporting news!