England Sevens at risk as RFU continue to cut costs
By Matthew Treadwell
Last Updated: 07/03/19 11:07am
The England Sevens rugby team could be at risk as part of the latest cost-cutting measures being considered by the Rugby Football Union (RFU).
English rugby union's governing body made a loss of £31m over the 2017/18 season and parted company with chief executive Steve Brown at the end of 2018, a year that also saw 64 members of staff made redundant in order to save money.
Further cuts are required, however, and the RFU has conceded that the sevens side could be affected, especially as that form of the game sees Great Britain rather than the separate Home Nations compete at the Olympics Games.
"We have been very clear for some time that we need to cut costs in 2019/2020 as our revenues have not risen in line with our original forecasts. We have kept the game informed - and this is also outlined in our annual report," an RFU spokesperson told Sky Sports News.
"We are currently consulting with the game on how best to adjust costs. There are a broad range of options under discussion across the professional game, the community game, and our general overheads.
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"The sevens programme is one option we are looking at in the professional game and moving to a Team GB model makes sense, given that sevens is an Olympic sport.
"Any budget cuts in 2019/2020 come after years of record investment in the professional and community game."
Eight of the 12 players who won a silver medal with Great Britain at the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil came from the England Sevens set-up.