Rugby Union

Sam Warburton signs first dual contract

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Wales captain Sam Warburton is the first player to sign a dual contract with the Wales Rugby Union and his club side Cardiff Blues under the new agreement, reports BBC Sport.

The dispute between Regional Rugby Wales - consisting of Ospreys, Scarlets, Cardiff and Newport - and the WRU ended last month as the two parties agreed a £60m deal.

25-year old Warburton was the only player to sign such a deal when the WRU and regions were at loggerheads.

At one point it looked as though the British and Irish Lions star could have been without a club but his future has now been resolved.

An RRW statement read: "Regional Rugby can confirm that Sam moved to a dual contract at the same time as the new Rugby Services Agreement (RSA) was signed."

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Future

The agreement reached between the RRW and the WRU is aimed at ensuring Wales' best internationals play their club rugby in Wales.

The WRU contribute 60% towards wages with the Regions stumping up the other 40%, and it is likely that the best players from Ospreys, Scarlets, Newport and Cardiff will now sign these deals.

Warburton himself was rested for the Blues 26-9 defeat to Ulster last week, with director of rugby Mark Hammett admitting the reasons for the open-side flanker's absence was due to the demands of the national team.

Limitations

Under his contract, the 25-year old is limited to 16 games a season for his region, although Hammett was adamant in saying the club are not told when he can or cannot play.

The RRW statement said: "The dual contract involves the WRU having primacy of contract with the national dual contracted player, but entering into a joint player agreement with the region which confirms the contribution of the player to both the region and the national side according to agreed structures.

"The total cost of the player is then split on a 60:40 basis between WRU and region, which broadly reflects the amount of time an international player is generally available to each party in a given season."

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Topics:
Wales Rugby
Rugby Union
Sam Warburton

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