Currie attack ‘pie-in-sky’ league plans

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Currie players have broken off a Premiership rugby survival battle, which continues tomorrow at home to Aberdeen Grammar FPs (kick off 1.30pm) to attack a proposed new semi-pro eight-team club league.

he idea is part of an SRU policy document and while proposals for academies. schools and women’s rugby have been carried forward, the semi-pro league has been stalled temporarily.

A Currie spokesman said: “A number of senior players suggested this would have repercussions for those who had careers and families. Individuals would need to consider their situation as further commitment to play club rugby at this level would be needed even if there was financial reward.

“It was felt this was pie-in-the-sky with too many unanswered questions, particularly the financing as the Union had to finance its own debt. Also, what were the likely knock-on effects on clubs outwith the semi-pro League? Currie have been so incensed by a proposal that would completely change the League without consulting the main stakeholders.

“Sports clubs throughout the country are already struggling (and) membership subscriptions generally fall far short of what is needed. Local sports clubs see the cost of hiring facilities shoot – a one-off £300 fee to hire a City of Edinburgh changing room makes the eyes water.

“As much as clubs would like to assist Scotland’s foundering professional structure, they cannot be expected to venture into unknown territory (and) many volunteers may not wish to undertake extra burden.”

Against bottom side Aberdeen, Malcolm Peacock comes into the back row for Mike Vernal as Currie bid to climb from fifth bottom, four points above the play-off spot.

Meanwhile, Edinburgh Accies v v Heriot’s has been postponed for a week. Heriot’s were originally a player short of the number on representative duty to apply for dispensation to cancel. An appeal based on an injury to George Turner, who would have been playing for Scottish clubs against France, has been upheld.