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World Rugby to assist color blind fans by banning red-green kits from 2027 World Cup

Ireland Vs Wales Rugby match
Photo: Charlie Jam/Flickr
In a move of inclusion, World Rugby is thinking about its colour blind fans by banning competing teams from wearing red or green.

As reported by The Mirror, the change will take effect from the 2027 Rugby World Cup, after which opposing red or green teams will not be allowed to compete against one another in those kits.

Red-green color blindness is the most common form of the condition and affects approximately eight per cent of male rugby fans.

World Rugby’s new rule will affect future matches played between Six Nations rivals Wales and Ireland, who are known for wearing red and green, respectively.

Marc Douglas, a qualified engineer who serves as research turf and equipment manager for World Rugby, spoke about the importance of engaging those fans who battle with color blindness.

“From our perspective, if youre potentially limiting 8 per cent of your male audience, thats a huge huge number of people who are suddenly switching off.”

The change will improve the experience for thousands of fans attending games or watching from home, as well as help players who are color blind.

Colour Blind Awareness founder Kathryn Albany-Ward said Euro 2020 was really good for color blind people” and raising awareness, but World Rugby is taking action to effect change.

Hopefully by the time Rugby World Cup 2027 comes round, this is the norm,” added Douglas.

“An awful lot of people dont realise that theyre color blind because they see what they see day to day and they dont know that people see any different.”

Weve identified quite a few areas that we can be much better at.”

There’s hope that by carrying out the change at the World Cup level, the rugby union may adopt the policy at all levels and improve the experience for every color blind participant.

Matches between Wales and Ireland will soon look very different, with at least one of those teams to adopt an alternative strip as a means to avoid clashing.

World Rugby chairman Bill Beaumont, who is color blind himself, is pleased with the direction to accommodate those around the sport who have the condition.

“Color blindness is largely misunderstood and the challenges for those who play, coach, officiate and support our sport is often overlooked,” Beaumont said.

“As someone who experiences those challenges first hand, I am delighted that World Rugby have launched comprehensive guidance for all levels of the game that place visually-impaired considerations at the heart of our decision-making.

“Through this guidance, we hope to raise awareness and change culture through positive actions.”

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