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Irish players seek union representation

Some 33 Irish women's players have signed a letter asking Rugby Players Ireland (RPI) to represent them in their ongoing spat with the IRFU and longer term. 

The letter expressed concerns about the governing body’s “lack of respect and ambition” for the women’s game and follows a “#legacy” wrist band campaign, which took place over the weekend.

Today the IRFU chief executive Philip Brown held a meeting with RPI chief executive Simon Keogh where they discussed the issues. 

The RPI said: “Simon Keogh today met with Philip Browne on a number of issues, including the representation of the Women’s XV. In that discussion the IRFU was informed that a number of the women’s squad have come together to request that Rugby Players Ireland act on their behalf going forward. We could not automatically adopt that role without a formal nomination by the player group. This request currently sits with the IRFU.

“We are hopeful that by providing the players with a collective voice, we will provide a conduit to the IRFU and also prevent any further disharmony.”

An IRFU spokesman described the meeting to the Irish Times as a "routine catch up."

Players who have talked to Scrumqueens have raised a raft of issues with the IRFU in recent days.  

Speaking to Scrumqueens over the weekend, players were critical of the singling out of the All Ireland League by the union, when they believe they have not addressed the challenges of the league. In November an Irish camp clashes with a full round of AIL games. 

Oddly, the IRFU must now decide if the RPI can represent its amatuer women's XV players. That decision is expected tomorrow.