English clubs block Wales players from trial
ESPN Staff
May 12, 2014

English clubs are unlikely to release their players to take part in Wales' pre-tour match on May 30. The game between Probables v Possibles is intended to be a final trial ahead of Wales' tour of South Africa in June.

Club v country?

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  • Ryan Jones (Bristol), Owen Williams (Leicester), George North (Northampton), Jamie Roberts (Racing Metro), Mike Phillips (Racing Metro), Dan Lydiate (Racing Metro), James Hook (Perpignan), Luke Charteris (Perpignan), Lee Byrne (Clermont Auvergne), Tavis Knoyle (Gloucester), Paul James (Bath), Gavin Henson (Bath), Jonathan Thomas (Worcester),Craig Mitchell (Exeter), Rhys Gill (Saracens), Marc Jones (Sale)

The WRU had hoped Premiership clubs not involved in the final would agree to allow their players to take part, but the BBC quoted a spokesman for the clubs as saying the policy was only to release non - England players for internationals as stipulated by the IRB.

"This regulation covers international release for every Test country across the world," the spokesman said. "This trial match does not fall under IRB regulation nine."

French clubs are also not obliged to make players available.

George North is the only person who has a clause in his contract guaranteeing his release for all training and playing duties. However, it is highly unlikely the WRU would press this should Northampton be in the Premiership final on May 31.

The WRU is intending to announce the two squads on May 13.

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