The stalemate between Rugby Australia (RA) and the players’ association (RUPA) over wage negotiations continue, with the two parties failing to reach an agreement on Saturday.
RA powerbrokers including embattled chief executive Raelene Castle met with RUPA representatives to discuss the extent of players’ pay reductions amid the suspension of Super Rugby because of the coronavirus pandemic.
But while no there was no resolution to the fortnight-long saga, the governing body emerged from dealings optimistic that a compromise could be reached before the end of Easter.
“Rugby Australia believes that progress was made and that both parties will continue negotiations in good faith for the good of the game,” RA said in a statement.
“The meeting was finalised early this afternoon and both parties have gone away to consider their position in anticipation of talks continuing over the Easter weekend.
“Rugby Australia is doing everything it can to enable an outcome that will provide short-term financial certainty and enable the game to emerge from this global health and economic crisis and continue to serve the 900-plus rugby clubs in communities across the country.”
Saturday’s talks were postponed from Thursday due to an RA director being ill.
It’s understood RA had asked the players to take a 65 percent pay cut until the end of September, but that proposal was rejected by RUPA last week when Castle only accepted a 50 percent reduction and other executives just a 30 percent cut.
It’s been reported that Castle has subsequently agreed to a further cut to match any reductions the players cop.
The cash-strapped governing body last week stood down 75 percent of their non-player workforce, after announcing a $9.4 million loss in 2019.