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Global calendar: Six Nations and SANZAAR confirm consultation over the past two months

Kyle Sinckler and Kurtley Beale

Six Nations and SANZAAR have issued a joint-statement providing an update on how they plan to align the Test window.

Following talks with World Rugby in March, the operators of the northern and southern hemisphere Test windows are working together to create a ‘global calendar’.

In the hope of modernising rugby’s commercial opportunities a review of Test windows have been going through the early stages.

This has led to reports of the Six Nations being moved from its traditional window of February and March, closer to starting in May.

In the statement, both unions agreed it was important to look past their own ‘self-interests’ in order to devise a new landscape for rugby to prosper.

“SANZAAR and the Six Nations have been working closely over the lockdown period against a set of key principles between the parties to develop and agree on proposals for an aligned global calendar,” read the statement. 

“Even though there may be different preferences, from the outset the nations have adopted a mindset that has sought to eliminate self-interest and recognise that the international and club game have shared mutual benefits that if approached and managed correctly can enable both to flourish. 

“A further consultation process, in total transparency with unions, clubs and players, will commence as all parties work towards an aligned global calendar that can deliver a clear and coherent narrative.

“The key principles that have underpinned the work to date are:

1. Significantly mitigate overlaps between club and country fixtures;

2. Better aligned player release windows for players, stakeholders and competitions;

3. Improve player welfare;

4. Improve the narrative and competitiveness of international and domestic Competitions around clear windows;

5. Define clear high-performance pathways for Emerging Nations through the delivery of an internationally more inclusive game;

6. Evolve competition structures that are underpinned with enhanced commercial offerings;

7. Restore public faith in the core values of rugby and showing strong collective leadership in the best interests of the game.

“The nations together with other key stakeholders remain open to shape the options that have been developed in an effort to resolve an issue that has held the game back for many years and are committed to putting rugby on a progressive path.”

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