England and Leicester prop Ellis Genge has announced plans to set up a new players’ union after feeling some people were badly advised after being asked to accept pay cuts amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Genge insists his proposed new organisation would complement rather than rival the Rugby Players’ Association.
The RPA represents more than 1200 past and present professional players, both male and female, but Genge claims his new group would have an advantage because “we wouldn’t have to answer to a governing body.”
The 25-year-old said on the BBC Sport website: “We are not making a new RPA. I think they do really good stuff with welfare in rugby and they look after people really well.
— The RPA (@theRPA) April 1, 2020
“But I do feel that people were poorly advised. People were advised from the off to sign the contracts without reading them, almost. Commercially, I didn’t think everyone was being represented very well.
“So I am trying to put together a players’ union. It is not to replace the RPA or to combat the RFU. Honestly, it is nothing of the sort.
“It is just so people can get really good advice from trusted professionals in those specific fields: around commercial and legal.”
Most Gallagher Premiership clubs asked players to accept blanket 25 per cent pay cuts following the suspension of sport.