Wales will consider Welsh-only policy
September 4, 2013
Lions flanker Dan Lydiate is one of those to have left Wales over the summer © PA Photos
Wales will consider only picking those who are playing in the country according to the chief executive of the Welsh Rugby Union, Roger Lewis.
With increasing numbers of leading players heading to England and France, where the rewards are far greater, Lewis is coming under increasing pressure to act to keep the big names in Wales.
He told the BBC that he supported the idea "in principle" but added: "We have to make sure we have created the right environment, both financially and in rugby terms, to retain those players in Wales in the first place.
"We are talking together, but it's not just talk. We met again a week last Saturday at the Millennium Stadium, with the chairmen of the four regions, and the key thing is how we can plan together sustainable futures for regional rugby in Wales."
Against the backdrop of a call from Gloucester coach and former Wales international Nigel Davies to adopt a policy of refusing to pick players based outside the Welsh system, Lewis said the WRU was actively working to address the issue and defended progress that he said had been made.
"We have a clear sense of the talent in Wales. We are identifying the pool of players we need to secure for the long-term future. We have committed to putting £6.6m into the regions this year, and at the heart of that is to help them keep Welsh talent in Wales."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Download ESPN's new UK multisport app, a fresh and powerful new way to follow your favourite UK sports news, scores and video.
Force India has announced that Sergio Perez will join Nico Hulkenberg at the team for the 2014 season
A report in the South Wales Echo says that supporters of the four regions are planning protests against the board at matches over the holiday period.
The opening round of the Nelson Mandela Championship was suspended for a second time on Thursday after more heavy rain in Durban
WBA super-bantamweight champion Scott Quigg is busy preparing for what could be a bumper 2014, according to his trainer Joe Gallagher
Bryan Habana will be out of rugby for two months after he sustained a thigh muscle injury
Tom Hamilton pays a visit to Oxford University Women's Rugby Football Club who have recently made headlines across the world, from Tokyo to New York
It's not a good time to be following English cricket, and that's reflected in the odds for the 3rd Test in Perth with the visitors 9/2 to win, a remarkable price given what happened in the summer but not too appealing given the events in the first two Te
Justin Pipe speaks to ESPN about how he almost gave up darts after losing his brother, and how a serious car accident almost ended his career
Australia conceded only two points in the rugby league World Cup final against New Zealand. Was this the heaviest victory in a final?
"Gentlemen, if you want to see the World Cup going south yet again, you are going the right way about it," John Taylor looks at the state of European rugby
Real Madrid put the seal on a fine Champions League group-stage campaign as they won 2-0 at FC Copenhagen on Tuesday - even if Cristiano Ronaldo did miss a penalty in the process
Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini inexplicably appeared to miscalculate the mathematical conundrum that would have given his side top spot in their Champions League group
Arsenal have implemented special security measures for their players and fans for the Champions League trip to Napoli due to fears over hooliganism
Former boxer Mike Tyson has been forced to cancel appearances in London for his autobiography after finding out he is banned from entering the UK
Tuesday night's winner-takes-all Champions League encounter between Galatasaray and Juventus was abandoned after only 33 minutes with the game goalless due to a severe hailstorm in Istanbul
What is still at stake and all the Champions League group stage permutations, including Arsenal, Manchester United, Chelsea and Manchester City
The heavy weight of expectation rests uneasily on the broad shoulders of several British boxers at the moment, writes ESPN's Steve Bunce
Phil Taylor is gunning for a 17th World Championship crown, but the likes of Michael van Gerwen and Adrian Lewis will be out to deny him success at the Alexandra Palace
The name Alf-Inge Haaland will forever be associated with the Manchester derby, and a certain Mr Roy Keane
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