The Neath-Swansea Ospreys today made clear the playing arrangements agreed
in light of the regional side's move to the Morfa stadium next season.
Ospreys joint managing director, Mike Cuddy, had already made clear at last
week's supporters consultation meeting that the regional side are committed
to playing at least 13 games at Morfa during next yearÂ¹s season, with the
balance to be played at NeathÂ¹s Gnoll ground. The arrangement emulates the
likes of leading Irish rugby team Munster and French side Toulouse, who both
operate dual playing venues.
With 18 home games anticipated for the Ospreys during season 2005/2006, the
decision should see around five games played at NeathÂ¹s historic Gnoll
Speaking today Ospreys joint managing director Mike Cuddy said:
"When reaching initial agreement over the playing arrangements for next
season, it seemed clear that we needed to strike the right balance between
the commercial interests of the Ospreys and the use of the new Morfa
"In order for the stadium, commercially, to be a resounding success, we
obviously needed to ensure that the majority of our games, would be played
at what will be a truly world class facility. Equally, we were aware that
there were games in the rugby calendar that would be inappropriate to be
played at Morfa due to the size of the anticipated crowd and the resultant
costs of manning the stadium.
"By splitting games between Morfa and the Gnoll, the Ospreys will be able to
effectively manage commercial pressures and interests, whilst keeping a
strong element of regional rugby at the Gnoll which, on current projections,
will see around five games played in Neath next season."
Ospreys chief executive Andrew Donald added:
"With a year to go before the new Morfa Stadium is up and running the
Ospreys are now talking to potential sponsors in preparation for the
2005/2006 season. As part of these negotiations, the biggest question
coming back at us was how many games would the Ospreys be playing at the
stadium and our position now answers this question.
"By operating a dual stadium system, emulating the likes of Munster and
Toulouse, we will be making the most of Morfa, its facilities and commercial
opportunities, whilst also making the most appropriate use of the Gnoll. As
a result, redevelopment will continue at the Gnoll over the next season, to
ensure a crowd capacity of around 12,000.
"With our supporters consultation exercise now well underway and with the
opening of the stadium so close at hand, we will keep a watching brief on
the policy and are prepared to make changes, where necessary, in the
interests of both the Ospreys and regional rugby. Commercial interests will
ultimately and logically determine the level of matches to be played at each
Roger Lewis talks to WRU TV at the announcement of a new £60 million Rugby Services Agreement (RSA) which provides a new and positive contractual relationship between the WRU and its four Regions for the next six years has been agreed.
The Welsh Rugby Union has announced a major new sponsorship deal with Gullivers Sports Travel which will make the UK's leading, and longest established, multi-sport tour operator, an Official Supplier for the rest of the decade.
Having taken part in seven World Cups as a player and coach, Liza Burgess hopes to go out in style this afternoon when Wales take on Australia in the Play-off for seventh and eighth place in the Women's Rugby World Cup in Paris.
WRU Head of Rugby Josh Lewsey met with volunteers across the game earlier this week, championing their role in the sport. He was joined by Wales captain Sam Warburton for part of the day as volunteers took part in a 'Try Out' event for the 2015 Rugby World Cup
Wales Women may not have got the results they wanted recently on the field, but off it they have made massive strides in strength and conditioning - and that is in no small part due to S&C coach Sam Dodge.
Two weeks into the new pitch project at Millennium Stadium, Groundman Craig Campbell takes staff on a unique behind-the-scene tour of the works so far and National Squad Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach John Ashby and Tour Guide Peter Owen describe what the revamp means for them.