Melbourne Rebels

Melbourne Rebels Will Not Play Beyond 2024, Participation Agreement Blocked

The Melbourne Rebels’ 2024 Super Rugby Pacific season will be the last for the foreseeable future, after Rugby Australia chose not to grant a Participation Agreement.

Players and staff were informed on Thursday by Rugby Australia, news the club had been “dreading” after it had been placed into voluntary administration in January.

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“While this is undoubtedly a sad day for the Melbourne Rebels, the clarity that this decision provides for our players and staff is welcome,” the Rebels said in a statement.

“We are proud of our players, coaches, and staff in delivering such a successful season in the most challenging of circumstances.

“We genuinely could not have got through the year without our fans – and we cannot thank them enough for what they have done for us.”

Rugby Australia said the application “did not demonstrate sufficient financial viability”, and it had relied on “projections for revenue growth and cost savings that Rugby Australia believes are overly optimistic, raising significant doubts about the long-term sustainability of the proposed licensee”.

In preparation for the possible decision, Melbourne Rebels’ players had been meeting with Rugby Australia and the Rugby Union Players Association to discuss potential player movement within Australian Ruby.

Rugby Australia said it will continue this process in the coming weeks.

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