World Rugby has said it will decide upon the Test calendar for the remainder of 2020, including the four postponed games in the Six Nations, following a vote of the World Rugby Council on June 30th. Such clarity will not be a moment too soon for the Unions concerned.
This follows another round of discussions within the World Rugby Professional Game Forum on Monday containing representatives of all the leading Unions, Federations, the various professional club and provincial leagues, and the International Rugby Players Association.
Ireland’s postponed game at home to Italy could be played on October 3rd or 24th, while the concluding round of the tournament, which was to have taken place on March 14th and included Ireland’s finale against France in Paris, has been provisionally rescheduled for October 31st.
Although this Forum is not a decision-making body, a statement by World Rugby intimated there is still disagreement as to when internationals can be accommodated in October, a month normally reserved for the domestic professional leagues and the 2019-20 European competitions, which are also incomplete and require three weekends to run off.
“In the absence of full alignment, further information sharing and discussion will be undertaken with all parties regarding the viability of proposed adjustments to the 2020 international release weekends stipulated in Regulation 9 that will enable postponed and other international matches to be played in an adjusted window from October, while enabling the completion of existing club competitions.”