Deprived of the 2023 World Cup, Spain appeals to the CAS

Spain, which still hopes to play its first World Cup since 1999, is playing its all out: an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. The Spaniards had been penalized with a withdrawal of 10 points from the European qualification table, for having fielded an unqualified player.

The presence in the Spanish XV of pillar Gavin Van Den Berg (26) of South African origin had caused a complaint from Romania, a nation deprived of automatic qualification, after finishing just behind Spain. To be eligible, Van den Berg would have had to spend 36 months residing in Spain, including at least 10 months each year. Or Van den Berg had spent more than two months outside Spain in 2019.

Spain had seen its appeal rejected by an independent Commission on June 27th. Romania had thus qualified in Pool B of the 2023 World Cup, replacing Spain.

This Monday morning, following a meeting held at the headquarters of the Spanish Rugby Federation (FER), delivered by Mariola Arraiza, Spain decided to initiate proceedings with the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) regarding the sanction imposed by World Rugby Judicial Committee. An appeal which also has a symbolic significance before the elections at the head of the Spanish federation, on Saturday July 30.

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