Premier League clubs will consult with players over wage reductions and deferrals amounting to 30 per cent of salary as they grapple with the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The worsening of the Covid-19 outbreak has led the English professional game to acknowledge that football will not return at the start of May. No restart date has been fixed – instead it will be kept under constant review. The suspension has created financial issues for clubs throughout the football pyramid, with non-playing staff at a variety of clubs having been placed on furlough leave under the Government’s coronavirus job retention scheme.
The Ospreys’ training base at Llandarcy Academy of Sport is to be transformed into a field hospital in a bid to deal with the coronavirus pandemic. Work has already started at Llandarcy - which is part of the Neath Port Talbot College Group of Colleges - and will be completed in the next three to four weeks. The beds would be used for COVID-19 patients and other patients who need medical care, but they will be nursed in separate areas.
Players at Cardiff City and Swansea City are among all those in the Premier League and Championship awaiting the outcome of talks over wage cuts. Both Welsh clubs have announced some of their senior staff and managers are having their pay reduced as a result of the coronavirus crisis. They have also joined some other clubs in claiming they will use taxpayers’ money by taking advantage of the government’s furlough scheme.
Emergency funding of £400,000 for community sport in Wales has been announced by Welsh Government and Sport Wales today. Welsh Government has confirmed they are making £200,000 available to provide support to not-for-profit sports clubs. This is being match-funded with £200,000 from Sport Wales.
Donna Grimwood started helping out at South Pembrokeshire Golf Club to support her club captain husband, a journey which has taken her to the Wales Golf Volunteer of the Year Award. Amongst other things she initiated and drove a New2Golf scheme which saw 39 adults taking part along with 20 juniors, with many going on to become full members of the club taking part in regular competitions. Donna has even taken up golf herself for the first time, as part of the scheme she runs along with Haverfordwest PGA golf professional Sam Barton.
This week, exactly 70 years ago, 13 Welshmen met up in London. They had packed some clothes and their boots in suitcases, said goodbye to their families, and now they were to sail to New Zealand to play rugby. They would be back in October. Rob Cole salutes the epic journey of the 1950 British and Irish Lions. It will take the 2021 British & Irish Lions 11 hours to fly from London to Johannesburg when they embark on their next tour to South Africa. They will stay for five weeks and play eight matches, including three Tests against the current Rugby World Cup holders.
A nine-year-old schoolgirl with cerebral palsy and epilepsy is determined to raise money for NHS charities through an epic cycle ride. Ffion Davies from Johnstown, Carmarthen is aiming to cycle further than she has ever gone before on her specially adapted bike.
Jayne Ludlow’s Wales team are going to have to wait another year if they are to appear at their first major football tournament finals. The Wales manager has guided her team to within sight of qualification for the Euro 2021 competition, but those finals have now been put back until 2022 due to the coronavirus pandemic. Strangely, the announcement did not come from governing body UEFA, but from the Danish Football Association (DBU) on Wednesday night.
Wales squash champion Geoff Perrett is the pride of Porthcawl - at the age of 70. Remarkably, Perrett lifted the national over-70s title trophy after being ruled out for more than a year because of a serious illness that required surgery. There were 12 entries in the recent Welsh men’s over-70 event and third seed Perrett lifted the trophy after three wins including a 15-9, 15-0, 13-15, 17-16 triumph against second seed Leighton Jenkins.
Cardiff Met’s Scottish hockey international Callum Mackenzie believes postponing the Olympic Games by 12 months has improved his chances of going to Tokyo. The student - who represents Cardiff and Met Hockey Club as well as Scotland and GB U21s - admits having no hockey to play for the time being has come as a bit of a shock. But with the Olympics being shelved until next summer due to the coronavirus pandemic, Mackenzie feels he has another year see if he can break into the Great Britain squad and achieve the dream of representing his nation at the Games.
France have questioned Wales’ handling of Dan Biggar’s recovery from a head injury – despite the recruitment of a concussion specialist to oversee the player’s return. In a sideswipe from France team manager Raphael Ibanez that followed the former hooker’s dismissal of cheating allegations made against his team as “childish”,... Read More
Warren Gatland insists Wales have done everything they can to ensure Dan Biggar has fully overcome concussion. Biggar suffered head injuries in successive World Cup games against Australia and Fiji, but he has met all targets and will line up in Sunday’s quarter-final appointment with France. “He felt better after... Read More
By Harri Morgan After his prolonged lay-off, the rugby masses will breathe a sigh of relief when Leigh Halfpenny returns to business this afternoon. He is just one of the blokes that exudes the values of which followers of the sport readily boast. He will do so in the Scarlet... Read More
Leigh Halfpenny’s return to rugby looks entirely uncertain again after the decision to abandon any idea of a Scarlets comeback this weekend. The Wales full-back had been released back to Scarlets this week, but has not been considered for Saturday’s Guinness Pro14 trip to Benetton. Halfpenny has returned to full... Read More
As Leigh Halfpenny tries to overcome the effects of concussion and resume playing, a growing number of players have been unable to return. This month it was Ben John and before that Dragons centre Adam Hughes was forced to retire. Peter Jackson of The Rugby Paper hears Hughes’ story. Adam... Read More
Leigh Halfpenny is still suffering from headaches two-and-a-half months after being concussed by a late tackle playing against Australia. Wales coach Warren Gatland revealed Halfpenny’s continuing symptoms at the launch of the Six Nations, where he admitted the Scarlets full-back would definitely miss the opening two rounds of the tournament.... Read More