IRFU announces pay deferrals of 10% to 50%

The measures will apply to all IRFU employees on a sliding scale. Photo By Oliver McVeigh/Sportsfile via Getty Images

All Irish Rugby Football Union (IRFU) employees will take a 10% to 50% pay deferral to help the organisation save money, the rugby union announced on Friday.

The deferrals will be based on an equitable sliding scale and will be effective from April.

The IRFU did not give a finish date for the deferrals but said in a statement it would "remain subject to constant review."

The move comes on the same day a quarter of the Gallagher Premiership's clubs told players they will be taking a 25% pay cut.

"We are entering uncharted waters as the coronavirus crisis continues to unfold but we remain hopeful that something of this season can be retrieved later in summer," IRFU CEO Philip Browne said.

"This is important as the whole game, amateur and professional, is financially dependent on the resumption of the professional tournaments and the revenues that they generate. With postponement of these tournaments the IRFU and the Provinces are facing some daunting financial challenges around loss of revenue and cash flow and we must cut our costs.

"The IRFU has worked closely with our provincial colleagues and our partners in Rugby Players Ireland to move to protect the future of Irish Rugby and this arrangement will allow Irish Rugby the breathing space required in relation to cashflow that can ensure that when this crisis abates, we still have a business that can deliver for all those that play and love rugby. The situation will obviously remain under continuous review in case further action is required."

England's Rugby Football Union (RFU), Scottish Rugby and the Welsh Rugby Union (WRU) all cancelled the remainder of their domestic seasons on Friday with the only exception the RFU's Gallagher Premiership. The IRFU took the step to cancel their domestic season on Thursday.

Elsewhere, the PRO14 announced it was indefinitely suspending its season on Thursday and said the final would no longer be held in Cardiff.