Rugby World Cup organisers have announced plans to re-record the pre-match national anthems due to widespread criticism. The initial project involved 7,000 schoolchildren singing each country’s anthem without accompanying music, but fans responded negatively. France 2023 chairman, Jacques Rivoal, stated that the new versions would be simplified and approved by the competing nations. Tournament director, Michel Poussau, acknowledged that the anthems did not work as intended and confirmed that the competing nations would be consulted on the new versions.
In addition to the anthem controversy, there has been confusion surrounding head contact sanctions during the tournament. England’s Tom Curry received a two-match suspension for a high tackle, while Chile captain Martín Sigren received a yellow card for a similar incident. Jesse Kriel of South Africa faced no penalties for an upright tackle. Poussau acknowledged that refereeing has become one of the hardest jobs in the sport and emphasized the need to support the referees. He also expressed confidence in the referee team and refrained from commenting on specific decisions.