Welsh Rugby
WRU to present new Participation Agreement
November 6, 2008

The Welsh Rugby Union will present the four Welsh Regions the new draft Participation Agreement and Rugby Charter on Friday.

This document is based upon the months of work undertaken between the WRU and the Welsh Regions since June of this year and it is hoped it will ease the political pressure that has blighted the preparations for this month's international clashes.

In a statement released this evening, Roger Lewis, Group Chief Executive of the WRU said, "This is a major body of work created out of the very positive and constructive discussions which have taken place between the four Regions and the Welsh Rugby Union over the past four months. The document covers all of the major points which impact the game in Wales, including season structure and squad delivery alongside player management and release periods.

"It also covers organisational structures and minimum standards throughout the professional game in Wales, as well as pathways for Welsh player development and retention. In particular, the document looks at the current Academy structure and outlines plans for a National Academy, to be led by the new Head of Rugby Development and Performance, to be based at the WRU Centre of Excellence at the Vale of Glamorgan.

"Furthermore, the document also includes core Rugby Performance Protocols which cover the areas of coaching and selection, medical provision, conditioning, nutrition and analysis.

"Contained within this document are detailed proposals for a new funding structure for the four Regions. If agreement can be reached on these key points which will develop Welsh players and coaches and will drive Welsh rugby forward there is a major opportunity for the Regions to have significantly increased funding.

"The WRU is also committed to developing the Premiership Clubs and investing further into grass roots rugby as well as addressing the financial and capital investment issues surrounding the Millennium Stadium. A winning Wales National XV at our Stadium is the key business driver for all of Welsh Rugby and so this new Participation Agreement must be able to deliver a long term sustainable formula which achieves this."

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