RFU shy away from Euro spat

Wed, 18 Sep 2013 15:29
Large ianritchie

RFU chief executive Ian Ritchie has refused to get involved in a public row with the organisers of the European Cup with the future of the competition still in doubt.
 

RFU chief executive Ian Ritchie has refused to get involved in a public row with the organisers of the European Cup with the future of the competition still in doubt.

European Club Rugby (ERC) president Jean-Pierre Lux alleged on Tuesday that Ritchie told him that English clubs would not break away from the tournament and form an alliance with French sides.

The current row based on revenue, distribution and qualification for sides from the Pro12 saw English and French teams give notice to leave the ERC tournament at the end of this season.

Lux accused clubs on both sides of the Channel of using 'guerilla' tactics and PRL - the English clubs' organisers - said last week that negotiations were finished and they were prepared to go it alone.

Ritchie believes the row will be defused but not in the public domain and only if talks are held behind closed doors.

"I am not going to give a negotiating position in public because I believe it is better to see if we can bring everyone together," Ritchie told reporters at an event to mark two years to the 2015 Rugby World Cup.

"We will make our views extremely clear in private. This is something that is important and we need to get it resolved.

"People inevitably feel passionate, feel committed and want to say something about it. As far as I am concerned it is better to deal with these things in private.

"You would not expect me to comment on that."

Ritchie will be involved in the discussions which could continue on 23 October in Dublin after ERC invited all interested parties to thrash things out.

And the RFU man believes a compromise can still be reached which will derail the mooted Anglo-French alliance and encompass all rugby-playing countries in Europe.

He added: "A definition of a European competition means that you have got to have most of Europe participating in it. Our view is that we would seek to achieve a European competition that involves clubs from Scotland, Wales, Ireland, France or wherever.

"It is important for our clubs in England and the game that all of Europe should be and needs to be involved in that, and what we are trying to do is facilitate that. We are there to see if we can bring that end objective about.

"You are ever optimistic. There are passionate strongly held views on all sides in this thing and I totally get that. It is sensible for us to get to that end conclusion. I hope and believe we will get to that."

AFP

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 26 August 2016
Golden Lions v Boland 15h00 Johannesburg
Pumas v Griquas 17h10 Kimberley
Sat, 27 August 2016
New Zealand v Australia 07h35 Wellington
EP Kings v Western Province 14h00 Port Elizabeth
Sharks v Blue Bulls 16h10 Durban
Argentina v South Africa 17h40 Salta
RESULT SCORE
Sat, 20 August 2016
South Africa v Argentina 30 | 23
Golden Lions v Griquas 24 | 30
Australia v New Zealand 8 | 42
Fri, 19 August 2016
Blue Bulls v EP Kings 49 | 35
Western Province v Free State Cheetahs 25 | 32
Boland v Sharks 20 | 41
Sat, 13 August 2016
Free State Cheetahs v Blue Bulls 43 | 20
Golden Lions v Pumas 68 | 26
Fri, 12 August 2016
Sharks v Griquas 46 | 24
EP Kings v Boland 10 | 28
Sat, 06 August 2016
Boland v Free State Cheetahs 16 | 44
Hurricanes v Lions 20 | 3
Fri, 05 August 2016
Pumas v Sharks 10 | 33
Blue Bulls v Western Province 45 | 26
Sat, 30 July 2016
Lions v Highlanders 42 | 30
EUROPEAN CUP
MORE LOGS
Pool 1
Team P W D L Pts
Saracens 6 6 0 0 28
Ulster 6 4 0 2 18
Oyonnax 6 1 0 5 7
Toulouse 6 1 0 5 5
Pool 2
Team P W D L Pts
Exeter Chiefs 6 3 0 3 16
Bordeaux 6 3 0 3 16
Ospreys 6 3 0 3 16
Clermont Auvergne 6 3 0 3 15
Pool 3
Team P W D L Pts
Racing Metro 6 4 1 1 22
Northampton Saints 6 4 1 1 19
Glasgow Warriors 6 3 0 3 14
Scarlets 6 0 0 6 2
Pool 4
Team P W D L Pts
Leicester Tigers 6 5 0 1 23
Stade Francais 6 4 0 2 19
Munster 6 3 0 3 15
Treviso 6 0 0 6 0
Pool 5
Team P W D L Pts
Wasps 6 4 0 2 20
Toulon 6 5 0 1 20
Bath 6 2 0 4 10
Leinster 6 1 0 5 6