June International Tours

RFU display the initial ‘Way Forward’



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The Rugby Football Union has released its preliminary findings into a major review of the elite game in England.

A discussion document detailing major areas has been produced, identifying subjects such as management of elite England players, season structure and player welfare.

The so-called ‘Way Forward Project’ is aimed at finding what the RFU term “a lasting solution” to current issues.

RFU chief executive Francis Baron said: “The RFU initiated The Way Forward as a means of arriving at a lasting solution to the issues currently affecting elite rugby in England.

“As part of this process, we wish to encourage an open and informed debate across the whole game as to the right way forward.

“The analysis completed to date is based on factual, independent research and gives us a platform from which to discuss and resolve the fundamental issues currently affecting elite rugby.

“We are optimistic that, with the support and input of all those involved in English rugby, we will reach a solution that provides a secure foundation for the success of the professional game at both club and country levels.

“We are continuing our negotiations with the representatives of Premier Rugby, and are encouraged by recent progress.”

The RFU believes any solutions must “take into account the interests of both club and country; be right for professional players and for the wider game; and restore elite rugby in England as a leader of the world game.”

The RFU has arrived at 14 preliminary findings, which include “an improved approach” to player welfare in the professional game, overall management of elite player squad players being the “responsibility” of England’s management team and a “reshaped” season structure to “reduce club versus country tensions.”

Twickenham chiefs will now canvass views from key English rugby stakeholders on the findings and range of possible solutions, before launching a wider consultation process that is expected to last three months.

365 Digital

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