A rugby participation roadmap for the 2021/22 season has been agreed by the IRFU rugby committee. Photo: Sportsfile

Rugby participation roadmap for 2021/22 season agreed

The IRFU rugby committee has agreed a rugby participation roadmap for the 2021/22 season.

When public health measures allow, rugby will begin with a summer of fun and participation for players of all levels, ages and abilities.

Clubs can opt in or out, with a focus on fun through different game formats which may include touch rugby, tag rugby, 7s rugby, 10s rugby and 15s rugby. Localised friendlies can also be facilitated, where permitted.

It is anticipated that a return to competitive structures will commence in August for all men’s and women’s adult teams, Under 20s, schools, youths and minis, starting at local and provincial level.

Details of provincial competitive structures will be distributed through provincial channels when available.

It is intended to run a full Energia All-Ireland League with 50 teams in the men’s competition and 10 teams in the newly expanded women’s competition.

The roadmap has come about through ongoing conversations between the IRFU, provinces and clubs. Through their AIL forum, a majority of clubs have expressed a preference for a full 18-game regular season.

If public health or other factors do not permit a full All-Ireland competition, the contingency is an Energia Community Series at provincial level in the first half of the season followed by a shorter format Energia All-Ireland League in 2022.

The IRFU will continue to communicate directly with clubs and schools on season planning and a safe resumption of rugby activity. Further dates and details on activities outlined in the roadmap will be issued when available.

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