SRU president Rob Flockhart has issued a plea for clubs to turn out at Friday evening’s Special General Meeting and vote to approve outside investment in the country’s two professional teams.
Flockhart, who assumed office in August, has proposed the motion and believes that it has the backing of the union’s member clubs. However, with 106 cast votes required to make quorum (with two votes allowed per club) and a two-thirds majority needed for acceptance he believes “lethargy not apathy” is the main concern.
SRU chief executive Mark Dodson has set out his stall by claiming that “25 per cent wage inflation in the professional game” means the union must seek partners to protect funding for the grassroots.
Flockhart agrees and believes clubs need to get out and vote at BT Murrayfield in their own interests.
“As president and chair of the Scottish Rugby Council my responsibility is to the clubs. I would only be doing this if it was in their best interests,” said the retired solicitor and Boroughmuir member. “I believe that implicitly. To move forward we have to find a way of securing investment which safeguards the kind of amounts of money that have been put into the domestic game.”
When asked if he sees any cause for a no vote to be cast, Flockhart replied: “I can’t. I honestly can’t.
“It is in the long-term interest of clubs.
“For the most part, the clubs seem to have accepted it. There are some clubs who still have reservations, and we’re still speaking to them, but it’s down to a small handful.
“I’m now getting the feeling that the clubs realise that what we’re trying to do is look after their interests,” said Flockhart. “I am still hoping we get sufficient people along. The possible problem is that most clubs we have spoken to want it to happen but probably see that they don’t necessarily have to come along. I think we maybe have to get the message across that the clubs do need to take a bit of responsibility for their own futures. This is part of that it seems to me. We need to get a bit of trust that they should support us in taking in this forward.”