London Irish commit to Reading ... for now
June 11, 2014
Hollow feeling ... London Irish take on Stade Francais at a sparsely populated Madejski Stadium last season © Getty Images
London Irish have committed to remaining at Reading's Madejski Stadium despite concerns over falling attendances.
Speaking to the BBC, club director Bob Casey said the venue remained sustainable and the new consortium now running London Irish had decided to remain there for "the foreseeable future".
"Our average attendance was 11,500 four years' ago," Casey said. "With the new owners and their drive then I don't see why it can't be sustainable. From a playing side it's a fantastic stadium and when we get the support it's a special place to be.
"The solution is to get the rugby right. To get the atmosphere we had four or five years ago, with the same intensity and passion and hopefully that will attract people back."
The contract with Reading FC runs until the end of the 2025-26 season but there is a break clause allowing London Irish to end the tenancy early.
With Brentford FC looking to move to a new ground in west London in two years' time, there has been speculation linking the Exiles to a groundshare there. It would certainly be nearer their spiritual home in Sunbury, and also closer to the lucrative London market.
"When you look back at when we were successful we had a real core of players coming through the academy and we want to return to that," Casey said. "We believe if London Irish is to be successful then the academy has to be at the heartbeat of everything we do."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Communication error please reload the page.
New Zealand Rugby officials are confident a mosquito-transmitted disease in Samoa and an annoying drain won't threaten the All Blacks' historic Test in Apia
Brendan Rodgers admitted Liverpool missed their creative spark after leaving several senior players at home as his side lost to Besiktas on penalties on their return to the Ataturk Stadium
Even the best player in the world can apparently have a bad day once in a while, and it was a tough one on Thursday for Rory McIlroy at PGA National
Dave Chisnall saw off Kim Huybrechts 7-4 to move joint-top of the Premier League Darts table, after Michael van Gerwen drew with Adrian Lewis in Belfast
Liverpool are expected to be cleared of any Financial Fair Play breaches on Friday, but Hull will be handed a small fine by UEFA
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
On Thursday Ron Dennis addressed and fielded questions from the media in Barcelona regarding Fernando Alonso's accident. Here is his full response in full
Charlton are investigating footage that appears to show a couple having sex on the club's pitch
How often has a team that lost its opening Championship match gone on to take the title outright?
"This team deserves to be recognised as the greatest of all time." Huw Richards looks at Gareth Edwards' final match for Wales