Huge majority of Irish players against proposed Six Nations changes

Huge majority of Irish players against proposed Six Nations changes

Irish rugby players have voted by a huge majority to reject the proposed shortening of the Six Nations, writes Stephen Barry.

The English RFU and Premiership clubs want the tournament run-off in five weeks, rather than the current seven, to free up two weekends for domestic and European games.

However, 93% of players who voted in the Rugby Players Ireland survey rejected such a move.

“The intensity of the Six Nations Championship is like no other competition I have ever played in,” said Ireland captain Rory Best, who is in camp with the British and Irish Lions squad at Carton House.

“If it were to take place over a five or six-week period, players who pick up niggles during the tournament would struggle to return while those who take to the field every week would be fatigued to such an extent that it would undoubtedly impact on their involvement with their clubs once the tournament finishes.”

Best believes the competition could be spoiled for spectators, with players missing more games.

“While we now have plenty of guys who can play their part, the bonus point system dictates that every game counts more than ever before.

“As one of the best supported competitions in the rugby calendar, every paying fan will expect to see the strongest sides week-in, week-out.

“It is important that the integrity of the Six Nations, from a spectator’s perspective, remains intact as far as possible.”

More in this Section

West Ham boss Pellegrini surprised by Everton’s strugglesWest Ham boss Pellegrini surprised by Everton’s struggles

Robertson wary of Manchester United threat and insists form is irrelevantRobertson wary of Manchester United threat and insists form is irrelevant

Irish fans in mad dash to swap quarter-final ticketsIrish fans in mad dash to swap quarter-final tickets

WATCH: Japanese team a hit off the pitch too with rock-paper-scissors videoWATCH: Japanese team a hit off the pitch too with rock-paper-scissors video


Lifestyle

Leopard print midi dresses and sequins swirled beneath glossy goddess hair and golden headbands as the great and the good of Cork gathered for ieStyle Live.Leopard print and sequins to the fore at inaugural #IEStyleLive event

You have a long half-term break ahead of you all, and there’s only so much screen time anyone in the family can handle. Everyone is going to need a book-break at some point or another.We reviewed some of the best new books to keep kids entertained over half-term

Sexual politics, snideput-downs and family rivalries are fuelling the trouble brewing in a small Midlands town.Charlie Murphy and Pat Shortt star in new Irish film 'Dark lies the Island'

Robert Hume tells of the eccentric MP for Athboy, Co. Meath – born 300 years ago this month – who thought he was a teapot, and was afraid his spout might break off.A strange brew of a man: The MP for Meath who believed he was a teapot

More From The Irish Examiner