'WRU has been erratic and unpredictable'
March 27, 2014
Edward Griffiths' Saracens will play in the new-look European tournament next term © Getty Images
Saracens CEO Edward Griffiths has praised the Welsh regions for their role in brokering a new European deal but has questioned the role of the Welsh Rugby Union.
The new European competition which will replace the Heineken Cup is expected to be confirmed in the next couple of days. Reports say the French and Italians are the last to sign the new accord but a deal is still set to be announced imminently.
The news will bring to an end two years of discussions over the future of European rugby and while Griffiths praised the Welsh regions for their part in the talks, he seemed less impressed with the WRU.
"I think some of the Welsh Rugby Union's behaviour has been erratic and unpredictable," Griffiths told the BBC. "Maybe they've come round to see a little bit of sense."
The new competition will be a 20-team format with six representatives from the Aviva Premiership, six from the Top 14 and seven from the RaboDirect PRO12. The final place will go to either the seventh-placed side in the French league or the English top flight.
Griffiths claims the new competition is "good news" for European rugby.
"I think everybody should be happy," Griffiths said. "The Welsh regions have been clear and been clear-minded in the whole process and deserve a lot of credit for sticking to their guns. At the end of the day this isn't good news for just the English clubs, or the French clubs, or the Welsh regions, it's good news for European rugby.
"We've got a competition with a fairer format and with a fairer financial distribution, and in fact there's no reason why this format won't actually generate more money for everyone. So it is truly a win, win, win competition and I think once the egos got out of the way it was fairly easy to find a solution.
"At the end of the day it's our responsibility as rugby administrators is to put the best possible competition on the table for the coaches and players to play in and the supporters to watch."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Communication error please reload the page.
Defending champion Roger Federer booked his spot in the Dubai Championships final for a ninth time with a 6-2 6-1 victory over Borna Coric
Jose Mourinho has accused Tottenham players of diving to get opponents booked and called on them to cut out the antics for the League Cup final
Tom May picks three players to put into your fantasy team, and three to leave out
Manuel Pellegrini believes Manchester City have been handed an advantage against Liverpool by the Merseysiders' draining workload in the Europa League
Marussia has been included on the revised 2015 entry list under the name Manor Marussia F1 Team, subject to compliance with this year's regulations
Kempton Park and which other course have a race named after Desert Orchid?
The controversial tackling technique will be in full swing in Dublin on Sunday, writes Conor O'Shea, and could be a decisive factor for Ireland
An honest England side have been searching for the heir to Jason Robinson for nearly a decade. Step forward Jonathan Joseph, writes Simon Barnes
Piers Morgan has declared himself "hurt" over former Arsenal goalkeeper Bob Wilson's claims that he is not an authentic fan of the club
The ARU must be applauded for its decision to introduce a pitch-side video review to assist match-day doctors with concussion assessments, Greg Growden writes
Nani has revealed Louis van Gaal has not spoken to him during his loan spell at Sporting Lisbon
Martin Murray has revealed he was taken aback by his fight with middleweight destroyer Gennady Golovkin, but only because the Kazakh did not punch as hard as he thought he would
Brendan Rodgers has hit out at the Premier League's television scheduling, saying it gives Manchester City an advantage over his Liverpool side heading into their crucial clash on Sunday
Chelsea have told fans attending the League Cup final against Tottenham on Sunday that they will take the strongest action against any fans involved anti-Semitic chanting against Spurs supporters
The winner of Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao's mega-fight will be rewarded with a new, specially commissioned WBC belt, it has been announced
Charlton are investigating footage that appears to show a couple having sex on the club's pitch
Chris Eubank Jr tells Inside Boxing of his hopes of a rematch with Billy Joe Saunders - and a dream showdown with the formidable Gennady Golovkin
Tottenham's League Cup final preparations are in full swing with the club set to duke it out with Chelsea at Wembley this coming Sunday
Some of the best fighters to ever glove up have plied their trade in the Octagon - now ESPN list the 10 best who have fought under the UFC banner
How often has a team that lost its opening Championship match gone on to take the title outright?