Player picks squad for professionals

AN EMPLOYMENT lawyer and former international rugby player has set up the first players' association for the sport to tackle problems arising from the switch to professionalism.

Richard Moon, an assistant and head of employment at Leamington firm Blythe Liggins, has set up the Rugby Union Players Association.

Moon, who played for England and is brother of Welsh scrum half Rupert Moon, said legal pitfalls were among the most serious difficulties faced by players.

The issues to be addressed include the length and nature of contracts, players' injuries and disputes with coaches.

“It's not only about players,” he said. “The clubs will also benefit. Players will have to honour their contractual agreements and clubs will be able to exercise some form of control over the players in whom they invest.”

Moon becomes secretary, former British Lion Robert Norster is chair and ex-England international Peter Winterbottom is deputy chair.