The ring-fencing of the English Premiership has, perhaps, taken a step closer.
Under proposals designed to restructure English club rugby around a revamped second tier, drafted by former Saracens chief executive Edward Griffiths, promotion to the Premiership would cease for at least four years from 2021 to 2025.
The 76 page plan positions the Championship as a new English player development hub, effectively replacing the Premiership academies.
Crucially the plan appears to have the support of the 11 current Championship clubs, which means that it has at least got a chance of making it to the starting line.
The thoughts of the RFU and the Premiership clubs are unknown, but given these financially straitened times I would have thought that, for the clubs at least, the security offered by no relegation would be something of a no-brainer.
Still, as ever, there may be those whose self-interest will prevail over the greater good.
On the face of it, it looks like a courageous and innovative way forward.
Once again, however, I won’t be holding my breath.
Total Flanker – the older I get, the better I was
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