Wales and British & Irish Lions stars Jonathan Davies and Ken Owens have taken up new roles representing the Welsh Rugby Players Association on the International Rugby Player’s (IRP) player council. Ken Owens recently finished a 5-year term as the Chair of the WRPA but in this new role continues to represent his peers across the rugby landscape.
In addition to this Wales and British Lion Jamie Roberts will be the International Rugby Players representative to World Rugby’s new High-Performance Rugby committee. (read article)
International Rugby Players is the global representative body for all issues of importance to professional Rugby players. The IRP represents, supports and unifies players on issues such as Player Welfare, Laws of the Game and World Rugby Regulations.
The player council has players such as Owen Farrell, Louis Picomole, Rory Best and Jonny Sexton as its current president.
Alun Wyn Jones also finished a term on the council recently and always ensured the interests of players in Wales had been heard at a global level.
The IRP players council also contain Wales 7s captain Luke Treharne who continues to give a strong voice for the 7s game in what is an uncertain time for the future of 7s.
It has become evident that during Covid-19 that players associations right across professional sport have become an emerging industry with a more influential presence and with difficult times ahead associations will become more prevalent stakeholders. Increase on demands on associations by its members on areas of mental health, well-being and concerns over careers have been well documented recently by the World Players Association.
Jon Davies on his appointment;
"I am passionate about ensuring I play my part in protecting the careers of my colleagues. Professional sport is going to go through a tough time with the impact of Covid-19 and I want to play a part in ensuring the people playing the game have their voice heard"
Ken Owens on his appointment;
"In this uncertain time, I want to be able to ensure that I can play my part in supporting my peers. lt is again an honour to continue to be a on the players council with the IRP. They are doing some great work protecting players and I hope I can provide some valuable input”
Omar Hassanein, Chief Executive of the IRP said of the appointments;
“We have a great relationship with our WRPA members and it’s fantastic to have the calibre of player such as Jonathan and Ken on our Players Council. They give a real insight on issues such as the global season debate as well as other on-field areas of importance and it blends well with the diverse range of experience we have on the Players Council from across the world.
“We were also delighted to be able to appoint Jamie Roberts to the new High-Performance Rugby Committee, which works directly with World Rugby to address a wide range of issues facing the game. Along with his tremendous on-field experience and his medical background, Jamie has a real passion for getting the players voice heard and affecting real change.”