The IRFU have confirmed that the Irish club rugby season has concluded, officially putting an end to the 2019/20 season.
The directive applies to all national and provincial competitions.
As a result, there will be no promotion or relegation in any of the five men’s Energia AIL divisions. For Cup competitions which have reached the final stage, the cup will be shared between the two finalists.
This will obviously come as a huge disappointment to clubs throughout the country, especially those who looked set for promotion to the higher divisions.
There were only four games remaining in the regular season of Division 1A for example.
The planned expansion of the women’s Energia AIL for the 2020/21 season is set to go ahead.
Speaking about the announcement, IRFU Director of Rugby Development Colin McEntee said:
“The decision to end the domestic rugby season for 2019/2020 season has not been made lightly. All options were discussed and the IRFU is satisfied it has arrived at the only equitable solution.
“These are challenging times for us all and we know clubs will be impacted by this directive, but we will look back at this season as one where we put the physical welfare of our rugby community above all else.
“Clubs are now in a position to make plans for the 2020/21 season. We look forward to marking the 30th anniversary of the All-Ireland League.”