WRU wins court battle with Pontypool over Premiership status
The Welsh Rugby Union has won its High Court battle with Pontypool RFC over the club’s Principality Premiership Division status.
Pontypool took the WRU to court to challenge the organisation’s decision to reform the Principality Premiership for next season – which meant Pontypool would no longer play in the top division of domestic rugby.
Now a High Court judge has ruled in favour of the WRU ending Pontypool’s challenge.
The Honourable Sir Raymond Jack, sitting as a judge of the High Court, said within his 38 page judgement: “I conclude that Pontypool has failed to establish any breach of contract or any breach of duty on behalf of the WRU and there are no grounds for the intervention of the courts.” Permission to appeal has also been refused.
The WRU’s planned reforms of the Principality Premiership, and the establishment of a new 14 club National Championship Division, will now be implemented. The announcement of the Welsh rugby league structures and fixtures, which has been delayed pending the outcome of the legal proceedings brought by Pontypool, will now go ahead as soon as possible.
The Group Chief Executive of the WRU, Roger Lewis, said: “We can now all place this issue behind us and move forward in the best interests of Welsh rugby. We were disappointed that Pontypool decided to take this legal action against the Union. We cannot achieve change without facing up to difficult decisions. It is important we all now move on in harmony for the sake of the game.
“The WRU encourages the coaches, administrators and supporters of Pontypool to seize the opportunity we have created with the new National Championship Division to make the progress they seek as a club.
“Pontypool RFC has a proud place in Welsh rugby and we are confident that the supporters and the team will embrace the challenges of the new season with their usual energy and enthusiasm.”