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Welsh rugby disaster: Cardiff followers accuse WRU of ‘devaluing’ all 4 areas

Cardiff supporters
Cardiff rugby supporters have written to new WRU chair Richard Collier-Keywood

Rugby followers have accused the Welsh Rugby Union of undermining the 4 areas with its money-making stadium plans.

The WRU is in talks over internet hosting a Wales v Barbarians match in November and Bristol v Gloucester in December on the Principality Stadium.

Nonetheless each video games would conflict with two key United Rugby Championship (URC) derbies between Cardiff and Scarlets.

Cardiff supporters have criticised the proposals as a “staggering” short-term repair that “devalues” the regional sport.

In a letter to new WRU chairexternal-link Richard Collier-Keywood, the CF10 Rugby Belief mentioned it “couldn’t fathom” why the WRU would look to host a global match on the identical day as a regional derby.

Scarlets and Cardiff are resulting from meet in Llanelli on 4 November, the date that has been pencilled by the WRU to host Wales-Barbarians on the Principality Stadium.

The reverse fixture between the regional rivals at Cardiff Arms Park – 2 December – is identical day a Premiership match between Bristol and Gloucester is being explored.

“We knew 2023-4 was not going to be a simple season with the inevitable [financial] cuts. What we weren’t ready for was the persevering with undermining of the 4 skilled golf equipment by the WRU,” the letter reads.

“The optics of selling a conflict from a rival league at our nationwide floor while concurrently reducing the funds to our personal skilled groups to the bone is, fairly frankly, staggering.

“It creates, or maybe confirms, the impression that our governing physique sees the skilled sport under Crew Wales as expendable.”

The monetary disaster in Welsh rugby will see funding to Cardiff, Dragons, Ospreys and Scarlets minimize by £2m – from £7.2m to £5.2m – subsequent season, and lowered additional to £4.5m for the 2024-25 marketing campaign.

Cardiff noticed its losses worsen, from £1.6m to £2.2m for the yr ending 30 June, 2022.

‘Do issues otherwise’

WRU boss Nigel Walker says the sport must discover further income streams as they give the impression of being to host extra matches at Principality Stadium.

“We have to consider doing issues otherwise,” he mentioned.

“What we aren’t going to do is be reckless, we aren’t going to introduce issues which is able to destroy the material of Welsh rugby however we do want to think about methods of elevating revenues.”

Nonetheless the letter from supporters, signed by the belief’s chair Lynn Glaister, highlighted that areas now solely have 11 assured residence league and European video games a season to generate income.

“The WRU count on the 4 Welsh groups to drive up their very own matchday and sponsorship income. But the WRU appear to have already forgotten about this within the identify of short-term pondering,” she mentioned.

“It appears there isn’t any wider technique for the Welsh professional sport past discovering new methods to squeeze each final drop of earnings from the Principality Stadium, whatever the long-term prices to the sport as a complete.”

The kick-off to the 2023-24 URC season has been postponed to late October because of the World Cup in France.

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