Sapias steps down as PNG rugby union president

President of the PNG Rugby Football Union (PNGRFU), Richard Sapias, has stepped down from his position.

Sapias announced his resignation in a media statement over the weekend. He was the president of the PNGRFU for 7 years.


Sapias, who was elevated to the position of Oceania Rugby president in April of this year, said the new role required him to step down. Sapias was also appointed onto a regional committee for world rugby.

“It has been a tough road since I took up the role and I think it is time for someone new with fresh ideas and will put rugby ahead of personal interests.

“Someone who will bring clarity and have an honest, good track record to handle the huge responsibility of such an important position,” said Sapias.

Sapias said there is so much work to be done, but finance has been a hindrance.

“There is no quick fix-it solution, but I commend the full-time staff for doing a fantastic job with little funding,” said Sapias.

He went on to say that the PNGRFU was doing well with limited funding to run its sevens programs.

“In fact, we are doing well with very little support. As a Union, the challenges are immense and the body has better chances of achieving more on the world stage by working together,” said Sapias.

In going forward, the New Irelander said in his capacity as the regional head, he will put forward a case for at least two Oceania teams to participate in the Hong Kong Cup of Nation’s tournament.

“This is a strong competition for tier two nations and depending on how hard I lobby, I hope to gain access for Papua New Guinea to be one of those nations,” he added.


Troy Taule