Positive discussions about a potential new Anglo Welsh rugby competition to replace the current EDF Energy Cup have taken place between senior representatives of the Rugby Football Union and the Welsh Rugby Union.
They agreed in principle to seek approval from participating clubs for a new cup structure which would involve teams from the Guinness Premiership in England and the four Regions of Wales along with the Welsh Premiership and the English Division One which is being renamed the Championship.
The Welsh Rugby Union asked the RFU to submit more detail of the proposals which can then be discussed in Wales with the four Regions and representatives of the Welsh Premier Division.
The proposals were discussed in Cardiff at the weekend by the RFU Chief Executive Francis Baron and Management Board Chairman Martyn Thomas along with the WRU Group Chief Executive, Roger Lewis, and the WRU Chairman David Pickering.
Agreement in principle was reached to seek support from the PRL in England and the Regions and the Premiership organisation in Wales to advance the proposals and consider any other new ideas for a competition structure.
The WRU Group Chief Executive, Roger Lewis, said:"Cross border competition between teams from England and Wales is vital to sustain, develop and generate new support for rugby union in both countries.
"The EDF Energy Cup has been a great success and a new competition would serve to build on the support which we know exists for these games.
"Our players, in particular, benefit from this level of competition and the supporters get to experience meaningful encounters with the real jeopardy that exists within a top class cup tournament.
"I have alerted the four Welsh Regions and the Welsh Premiership clubs to this new opportunity and we look forward to discussing it further with them."
WRU Chairman, David Pickering, added:"With the backing of both unions we now hope the clubs and their representatives will help us deliver a product which will be beneficial to us all.
"The RFU have been extremely supportive of the concept of a new competition and we must now build on our joint will to reach a positive conclusion to these discussions."
The meeting at which the proposals were discussed took place at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff over the weekend of the Wales versus England international.
The semi-finals and final of the EDF Energy Cup will take place at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry and Twickenham on March 28 and April 18 respectively.
For further information contact John Williams, Communications, Welsh Rugby Union, firstname.lastname@example.org. M 07824 357083
Wales Under 18 captain Callum Bradbury is delighted to have seen his side claim a narrow 18-17 victory against a strong SA Schools 'A' side to end the three-match Under 19 International Series in South Africa on a high note.
The Wales U18 squad spent an emotional day in the drug-riddled townnship of Hout Bay. Hout Bay Warriors President Fred Johannes said the visit was 'the talk of the town' and will dream about the day everyday for the rest of his life.
RGC 1404's new head coach Mark Jones is hoping to build 'something special' in north Wales and is already looking forward to the development region participating in the Principality Premiership for the very first time.
A joint venture between the WRU and Admiral saw hundreds of children enjoy the Admiral Festival of Rugby held at the National Centre of Excellence at the weekend where Welsh internationals Sam Warburton, Scott Williams and Rob Evans were in attendance.
Wll Jones leads Wales U18s into battle this afternoon against Italy where the Welsh side will be seeking to bounce back from their narrow defeat to SA Schools in their opening clash of the U19 International Series
All four regions attended a successful training camp staged last weekend at the WRU National Centre of Excellence. It was a chance for new Wales Women's head coach Rowland Phillips to deliver his key messages to players and coaches as he prepares for the new season.
Wales U18 Team Manager Gethin Watts believes the next couple of weeks will be 'extremely beneficial' to the future of Welsh rugby as his side prepare to take part in the Under 19 International Series being staged in South Africa.
The WRU is searching for 12 new rugby development apprentices following a successful first year of its WRU Coach Core programme. Craig Duncan and Jess Hancock have flourished in the first year of the programme which has given them a real direction in their lives.
The WRU signed TV comedian Rhod Gilbert up to a 'Coaching Children Level 1' course before letting him loose on an U8s side at Whitland Junior Borderers - we went behind the scenes to film the making of 'Rhod Gilbert's Work Experience' see the results here.
Llandovery are aiming to make it three titles in a row in this year's Foster's National 7s being held at BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park on Sunday 28 August. Drovers assistant coach Simon Davies and Lee Rees assess their sides chances
A pioneering strength and conditioning programme has been delivered to more than 8000 boys and girls at hub schools throughout Wales this season, helping to develop stronger, more flexible athletes for rugby and other sports.
The Singha Premiership Rugby 7s Series returns to the BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park on July 22nd when all four Welsh regions go head to head. Scarlets skills coach Dai Flanagan and Blues Elite Performance Pathway Manager Richard Hodges along with current Welsh squad members were at the launch of this season's event