Connacht set for IRFU talks
CONNACHT are to hold talks with the IRFU on the implications the new laws regarding foreign players will have on them.
The western province is to be treated differently to the three others but Connacht coach Eric Elwood (pictured) has voiced his concern over the impact the new rule changes will have on his side.
Elwood confirmed that he is in discussion with the IRFU about expanding his squad for next season and bringing in an extra "special project" player.
"We have our own agenda that we are working on with the IRFU in health and succession planning, and that is a work in progress," he said.
Connacht rely heavily on pinching young players from the academies of Ulster, Munster and Leinster, but this source of talent may dry up if the other provinces begin to hoard their academy graduates.
"You can look at it two ways; you can hope it can work in your benefit, but when it kicks in then it will have a stress on the four teams, because every other club will look after holding on to their own Irish players," he said.
Vainikolo seals move to France
Former England wing Lesley Vainikolo has left Gloucester to join French second division club La Rochelle with immediate effect.
The Tongan-born dual-code player scored 36 tries in 87 games for the Cherry and Whites after his switch from rugby league side Bradford Bulls in 2007, and he went on to represent England five times.