Why are the clubs playing premiership rugby at the same time as the Rugby World Cup?
All 12 clubs agreed to continue playing the Premiership during the Rugby World Cup. The Zurich Premiership has developed into such a strong league in recent seasons that it would have been a step backwards not to have played a full premiership campaign.
Will there be a different points scoring system?
No, the clubs have decided to stick with the existing scoring system – four points for a win, two for a draw and a bonus point for either losing by seven or less or scoring four or more tries.
When do the Rugby World Cup players return?
The players will return to their clubs as soon as they are knocked out of the competition. However, it will be up to the Director of Rugby and the player to decide exactly how soon the player begins playing for the club.
Are there any other changes to the Premiership this season?
This season (because it is a World Cup year) there are changes to the regulations regarding the use of foreign players. A club is allowed to have no more than three foreign players on the field of play at any one time during International release periods. During the rest of the season this reverts back to no more than one foreign player. A foreign player is someone who does not have EU workers rights.
The clubs have also voted to play Premiership rugby during the Six Nations campaign. Clubs need to deliver regular home and away rugby to their fans and continuing with the premiership campaign enabled us to remove the mid-week fixtures and provide the fans with consistency.