Monday 26 September 2016

Italian teams better off in second tier

David Wallace

Published 15/04/2016 | 02:30

It has been a poor season for the Pro12 and I can't help but feel that the right representatives are not being sent to the right competitions. Treviso and Zebre should be playing in the Challenge Cup. (Stock photo)
It has been a poor season for the Pro12 and I can't help but feel that the right representatives are not being sent to the right competitions. Treviso and Zebre should be playing in the Challenge Cup. (Stock photo)

It was crucial that Dragons beat Gloucester to reach the semi-finals of the Challenge Cup last weekend, but the Pro12 still only has one representative left in European competition, writes David Wallace.

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It has been a poor season for the Pro12 and I can't help but feel that the right representatives are not being sent to the right competitions. Treviso and Zebre should be playing in the Challenge Cup.

Treviso did nothing for the Champions Cup this term, they were the whipping boys and if Zebre get through next season it's likely they will be the same.

Ultimately, they would be far better off in the Challenge Cup, and it would in turn open up another spot for a stronger Pro12 side, to take their place in the Champions Cup.

It was important that Dragons didn't get knocked out last weekend. Because with Connacht also going by the wayside, it would have done nothing for the Pro12. I don't remember the league having such little representation in the two sets of semi-finals before.

The English and French clubs dominate the final places, but there's no reason why one or two more Pro12 sides shouldn't be joining them.

Irish Independent

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