Plans for a global Nations League are up and running again according to the Six Nations chief executive Ben Morel, who has said that an annual competition giving more meaning to the July and November Test windows could begin in 2024.
“We are really happy to be able, for the first time, create that series and present it in such a way,” Morel said at an Autumn Series launch on Tuesday.
“That’s thanks to the input of all the unions to create the right narrative for what are really fantastic matches. That for us is already a massive step forward as it’s never been done before. Also, making sure that the scheduling is right and limiting the overlaps as much as possible.
“Looking forward we are having a lot of discussions as to what could be the future of the international calendar when looking at July and November. That obviously needs to be compatible with player welfare and whatever adjustments we could make.
“We’re all pretty happy with what we have but that could be improved and whether that leads to a final or some sort of ranking that would be a positive to add. It is a complex matter but the Six Nations is playing a leading role in addressing that.”
As to when this ‘competition’ might come into being, Morel said: “It’s ‘24 onwards, I would say, that we are looking at right now.”
Morel was less revealing in outlining the specifics of any such competition but maintained that the existing July and November windows would effectively stay intact.
“Some kind of final is always exciting and what the fans would want to see but, at the same time, we need to make sure that all the unions benefit in terms of hosting matches at home and in a sufficient way to promote the game in their own country while being compatible with player welfare. So complex discussions but where there is a will there is a way.”
An annual Nations League has been flouted for years and World Rugby first gave real sustenance to the concept when unveiling its plans to the various Union chief executives and the International Rugby Players in September 2018, with the intention of starting it in 2022.
With the Six Nations, The Rugby Championship and British and Irish Lions tours to be ‘protected as jewels in the calendar’, the Nations League was…
Read More: Global Nations League rugby tournament could be up and running by 2024 2021-10-26 14:34:03