Spain's qualification campaign for the 2023 Rugby World Cup is over ©Getty Images

Romania's place at next year's Rugby World Cup in France has been confirmed after a Spanish Rugby Federation (FER) appeal against a points deduction for fielding an ineligible player was rejected.

The FER sought to introduce new evidence it said was not available when an independent judicial committee appointed by World Rugby initially ruled prop Gavin van den Berg was ineligible to play for Spain.

An independent appeal committee ruled not to admit the new evidence, unsatisfied by the FER's arguments as to why it was not possible to present this evidence first time around.

This new evidence would have demonstrated the player in question's complicity in tampering with his passport, claimed the FER.

With new evidence not deemed admissible, the appeals panel reviewed the original decision and decided no to overturn the sanctions.

Wang Shao Ing from Singapore chaired the panel, which also featured Australian barrister Adam Casselden and John Langford, a former international player for Australia.

Romania's last Rugby World Cup appearance came in 2015 ©Getty Images
Romania's last Rugby World Cup appearance came in 2015 ©Getty Images

Spain had finished second in the Rugby Europe Championship, which would have assured qualification to the next men's World Cup, but the Romanian Rugby Federation later claimed Spain had fielded an ineligible play in two games.

Van den Berg was found to be ineligible to represent Spain and so the Spanish were accordingly docked 10 points and fined £25,000 ($31,000/€29,500).

This dropped Spain below Romania, who now qualify for the World Cup, and Portugal, who will take Romania's place in the final world qualification tournament.

Georgia won the Rugby Europe Championship.

The 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan represented the first time Romania had failed to qualify, but they are now set to return to men's 15-a-side rugby union's showpiece event.

Romania go into Pool B alongside Ireland, Scotland, a qualifier from the Asia-Pacific region and defending champions South Africa.