New Zealand will send more than half of its snow-making equipment to Wallabies after it secured a lucrative new contract.
The All Blacks will have a total of 14 machines at home to be used in the 2019 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand.
A spokesperson for the Wallabies said it would use up to half of the equipment.
“It will be used to create snow shovels, slurry bags and snow trays and to make snow-filled puddles,” the spokesperson said.
“It is an important part of the preparation to go into the World Cup.”
The spokesperson said the Wallaby camp had been given the option to buy snow shoveling equipment for $1,000, but it would be used by New Zealand as a pre-season training exercise.
A New Zealand spokesman said the contract had not yet been signed.”NZ Rugby is a private company with a track record of producing the highest quality products and this is a big deal for Wallabies fans,” the spokesman said.
The contract with Wallaby has drawn criticism from New Zealand Rugby, with the governing body saying the contract would create a “significant financial loss” to the Wallasian game.
“This contract is clearly in breach of the conditions and will have serious implications for Wallaby Rugby,” New Zealand’s Rugby Board said in a statement.
“The Wallabies are not the only team to receive this contract from NZ Rugby and we will continue to work closely with NZ Rugby to ensure this is not happening again.”NZ Rugby said it did not want to be seen as criticising Wallabies or New Zealand, but the contract “is not reflective of our approach to Walla’s participation in Rugby World Cups.”
The contract also includes a $25,000 “compensation package” for each member of the Walla squad who goes on to win the 2019 World Cup.
“We will also be giving them an opportunity to train in some of the world’s best facilities including the Australian, Australian Rugby and NZ Rugby,” NZ Rugby said in its statement.
Wallabies skipper Dan Carter has been critical of the contract and said the team needed to improve its preparation for the World Series.
“If we were to lose one of our players in a tournament, we would certainly feel that way,” Carter told Sky Sports News.
“But, I think what we have got to do is, we’ve got to improve our preparation for next year and try to get better as a team and get ourselves in the best shape we can for the Rugby World Series.”