Pro players to return to training at Murrayfield on 22nd June

Chief Executive Mark Dodson says he would welcome lockdown being a catalyst for a switch to summer rugby

Scottish Rugby Chief Executive Mark Dodson hopes to have professional players back in training at Murrayfield from 22nd June. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk
Scottish Rugby Chief Executive Mark Dodson hopes to have professional players back in training at Murrayfield from 22nd June. Image: © Craig Watson - www.craigwatson.co.uk

SCOTTISH RUGBY Chief Executive Mark Dodson says professional players will be invited to train at Murrayfield on a voluntary basis on 22nd June, assuming that the Scottish Government move to stage two in the relaxation of Covid-19 lockdown restrictions on 18th June.

Speaking on a conference call with journalists this afternoon, Dodson said: “The most welcome sign of change is the fact that from June 22nd we’ve invited the players back to BT Murrayfield subject to on June 18th the restrictions being lifted and us going into phase two.

“Effectively, the Glasgow and Edinburgh players are being invited to voluntary fitness sessions, making sure that we keep players fit for a presumed resumption of contact rugby at the end of August or beginning of September.”


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Dodson added that Scottish Rugby would welcome this enforced pause in the game being a catalyst to a radical change in the rugby calendar weighted towards summer action.

“I think this is one of the optimistic things that has happened recently through coronavirus,” he said. “I am more encouraged than I have ever been in the time that I have been in the game about the level of optimism around the global calendar.

“From my point of view, on a personal level and from a Scotland level, we’re very happy with the idea of summer rugby.We think it’s good for participation at grassroots level, we think it is going to be something that takes the game forward, but the most crucial thing about this that the global alignment not only releases revenue opportunities but it works for everybody – it is a common sense issue, there is player welfare issues, there is also the idea that we can have make the summer and autumn series much more attractive.

“As I say, from where I sit there is more cooperation going on than I have ever witnessed in my lifetime. People are not taking entrenched positions, people are looking to include the emerging nations more than before and we are working a lot more closely with SANZAR around what they want.”

More to follow …


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David Barnes
About David Barnes 1938 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday/Evening News, The Herald/Sunday Herald, The Daily Mail/Mail on Sunday and The Sun.

6 Comments

  1. Summer rugby would be more entertaining but I love the fact rugby fills a hole in the winter. On the return to training, it’s ok for pro players but club players are in for a world of hurt when they finally get back, especially with the pro fit tight tops they wear nowadays.

  2. Superb officiating. Great game. Need to reduce subs as the power props coming on for 14 minutes were absurd. Chiefs 8 showing you need to be smart to play rugby as he was a penalty machine despite all his phyiscal attributes

  3. Superb officiating. Great game. Need to reduce subs as the power props coming on for 14 minutes were absurd. Chiefs 8 showing you need to be smart to play rugby as he was a penalty machine despite all his phyiscal attributes

  4. Superb officiating. Great game. Need to reduce subs as the power props coming on for 14 minutes were absurd. Chiefs 8 showing you need to be smart to play rugby as he was a penalty machine despite all his phyiscal attributed

  5. What was the issue against summer rugby? – apart from its ‘aye been’
    Thought it would be a win-win – less heating and lighting costs for clubs; better playing surfaces and training conditions for players; getting more kids on board during summer holidays and light evenings;a chunk of the season wouldn’t be competing against football for crowds; and the pleasure of watching faster running rugby at whatever level in a tee shirt rather than your thermals. Whats not to like?

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  6. Summer rugby. Given all that’s happened over the last few years Mark you might want to speak to clubs about this?

    Remember back in the good old days when we had the Season Structure work? Summer rugby was discussed there. From memory it wasn’t popular so unsurprisingly doesn’t feature in the draft proposals.

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