Former Wallabies skipper Stephen Moore has called for an overhaul of the entire Rugby Australia board in the wake of a state and territory revolt.
Six member unions, led by Queensland and the ACT, delivered a vote of no confidence to chairman Hamish McLennan on Friday afternoon after a disastrous year for the sport.
A season that started with so much promise with the return of Eddie Jones quickly turned into a nightmare as the Wallabies slumped to a historic group exit at the World Cup and off-field turmoil took centre-stage.
The botched handling of the shambolic centralisation process was the final straw as the states and territories went public with a plan more than two months in the making.
The Rugby Australia board was locked in meetings late on Saturday as they debated a path forward and the chairman's fate. It was the second meeting of the day, with McLennan not invited to a morning board meeting.
McLennan has been the public face of the organisation and recent criticism has resulted from the fact he has been the key figure driving many of the board's recent decisions.
Moore captained the Wallabies in the 2015 World Cup final and is an ACT Brumbies and Queensland Reds legend.
The former hooker has watched the sport's decline with a mix of frustration and sadness and said there must be questions asked about the way the other directors have overseen such a situation.
"The discussion is around Hamish at the moment but I would say the board in general needs to come into question," Moore said.
"They're the ones accountable for the direction and success of the game. It's not just one person, it's a board. That's why you have a board, to have multiple people driving the game forward. We haven't seen the progress we would've liked.
"These calls for change don't come about lightly. It's important to remember this is the last resort for unions, they never like to do this. In their view, this is the only view forward."
A detailed review of the board would leave chief executive Phil Waugh in a tricky predicament given he was a director before stepping into his current role in July.
The former Wallaby accepted some of the responsibility for the Jones disaster when announcing his exit in October but has pledged to help rebuild the sport.
There is general support for Waugh and some of his early decisions have been praised by many within the game.
Moore feels it's too early to pass judgement on the chief executive's tenure but said there must be questions asked about the process that saw him installed in the top job.
"He's quite new to the CEO role but as part of the board he's been involved in key decisions that have been made over the last couple of years so accountability also sits with him as a board member," Moore said.
"The whole CEO process is one of the things the members are talking about when they say they have lost faith in the board and chair. Directors becoming the CEO suggests a lack of governance in general. No disrespect to Phil but it did appear he was railroaded into that role."
While McLennan has faced heavy criticism in recent months, there is a widespread acceptance rugby's problems run much deeper than the embattled chairman.
Centralisation has been highlighted as the silver bullet but franchises are still waiting for firm details three months after the process was formally announced.
Beyond an overhaul of the sport's governance structure, there are few concrete plans to return the Wallabies to the sport's elite ranks and increase grassroots participation.
Moore identified this as a failure of the board and said it's a key reason why questions must be asked over their ability to continue as directors.
"We need a strategy," Moore said. "I can't see any strategy or plan. There might be one, but you and I as supporters of the game, where do you put your finger on it and say 'this is the plan for the game going forward'.
"We've heard about centralisation in broad terms. The Waratahs have signed up for various reasons, but what is the plan and strategy for Australian rugby? We've had six captains in one year, two coaches in the last 12 months, no high-performance director, we don't have a coach.
"We keep referring to the golden decade, it's going to be halfway over before we get ourselves sorted. On the flipside, if we do get it right, there's a lot of upside for rugby in Australia. If we get the right people involved and have a plan, there's a lot to be looking forward to."
We've made it a whole lot easier for you to have your say. Our new comment platform requires only one log-in to access articles and to join the discussion on The Canberra Times website. Find out how to register so you can enjoy civil, friendly and engaging discussions. See our moderation policy here.