Johnny Sexton believes there is no need to overhaul the Six Nations schedule
Players have voiced concerns with cutting the run-time from seven weeks to six. Sexton believes it would not be in their interest to remove one of the break weeks from the competition.
Fittingly Sexton spoke to 98FM Sport on the latest player welfare issue at an event to mark the player's union IRUPA re-branding to ‘Rugby Players Ireland’
“There are arguments for and against,” the Ireland out-half said on the issue today.
“I think it would be a lot to ask for the players to try and play five games in the Six Nations in five weeks.
“That was changed for player welfare purposes to give them a break half way through it and I think it works pretty well at the moment."
Sexton doesn’t expect a united front from all players on the issue, but he feels those in favour might not fully appreciate the difficulties it presents:
“There’ll be arguments for it; with a World Cup if you want to be successful you’ve got to go five, six games with no break to do well.
“There’s slight differences there in terms of with a World Cup you’ve got a group stage where you could potentially rest guys for some games and recharge the batteries.
“You’d have a fit squad you might have 35 players going on the World Cup, but by the time the Six Nations come you’ve already got a few injuries and you pick up a few more early on.”
Sexton feels making changes to the current structures might benefit the squads with deeper talent pools, the Irishman feels it’s something England could get behind:
“The other argument is the best squads will do better and maybe they deserve to win, England will probably be pushing that.
“They’ve got such a huge amount of players to pick from and great depth.”
The Irish Rugby Union Players Association will be known as ‘Rugby Players Ireland’. Rugby Players Ireland, the member association for Ireland’s past and present professional rugby and female international players, is committed to making Ireland the best place in the world to play the game – on and off the pitch.
Rugby Players Ireland Chairman Rob Kearney unveiled the new name and vision founded on their belief of the important role Ireland’s players have as key stakeholders in developing rugby in this country.