Saturday 20 April 2019

Ospreys-Scarlets merger ditched as Professional Rugby Board confirms the four Welsh regions will continue

Wales captain Alun Wyn Jones lifts the Six Nations trophy and Jonathan Davies lifts the Triple Crown trophy following the Guinness Six Nations Rugby Championship match between Wales and Ireland at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales. Photo by Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile
Wales captain Alun Wyn Jones lifts the Six Nations trophy and Jonathan Davies lifts the Triple Crown trophy following the Guinness Six Nations Rugby Championship match between Wales and Ireland at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales. Photo by Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile

Welsh rugby will continue to be represented by four regions for the 2020-21 season after the Professional Rugby Board ruled out a merger.

The announcement means the Ospreys and Scarlets will not be combined and also puts the proposal to establish a team in north Wales on indefinite hold.

The PRB, which runs the Welsh professional game, declared it is "united in its pursuit of what is best" without outlining plans beyond next season.

The Scarlets and Ospreys fiercely opposed a deeply unpopular merger as part of so-called Project Reset.

Under that blueprint the combined region in the west of the country, Cardiff Blues, the Dragons and a re-established side in north Wales would comprise the four professional teams.

It was set to be Wlsh rugby's biggest domestic shake-up since the inception of regional sides 16 years ago, but it faced immediate hostility.

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