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Sanderson: The 'really smart and concise' Lucy Wray interview

By Liam Heagney
(Photo by Malcolm Couzens/Getty Images)

Sale boss Alex Sanderson has described the loss of Worcester and Wasps from this season’s Gallagher Premiership as a tragedy, but he hopes that clubs can follow the advice of Saracens CEO Lucy Wray and expand their future revenue streams to ensure that they thrive. Asked about the depressing financial state of the game in England, the Sharks director of rugby referenced a recent interview that his former boss at the London club gave to City AM.


He suggested there was a lot in it of use across a league where the number of participants has suddenly gone from 13 clubs down to eleven in the space of just over a week with the RFU suspending both Worcester and Wasps.

Lucy Wray did an article in City AM which was really smart and concise and she doesn’t give many interviews,” said Sanderson, who was at Saracens for the majority of his career before switching back to Sale and becoming their DoR in January 2021. “What she talked about was the feasibility of the game and every club needing to have multiple revenue streams to be able to support the professional side of the sport. Not overspending as teams have done.

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“It is absolutely tragic when potentially people are out of jobs through no fault of their own endeavours, it’s just because the game is not in a good place and has potentially been mismanaged. Both clubs have run up high amounts of debuts and are unable to pay off.

“I’m sure for the most part it was through good intentions but it doesn’t detract from the fact that you lose two huge brands, huge Premiership brands, all the jobs at these clubs and then the ripple effect of families’ lives being affected, it is tragic. It is really, really sad.


“I hope that we can now use this as a means to change the game for the better. I’ll leave that to the smarter people but there are contracts going to be written after the World Cup and there are PGB meetings going on at the moment. Now is the opportune time to make it more feasible so that clubs don’t go under.”


What happened at Worcester has especially hit home at Sale as it was only last March when they agreed that Steve Diamond, the Manchester club’s former director of rugby, could bring Curtis Langdon and Cameron Neild to the Sixways club for a 2022/23 campaign that was abruptly halted after just three Premiership games.

“The lads are in touch. Curtis Langdon came around to one of our games, a Prem Cup game, the other week. They still come back and we see them around Hale and Altringham. They are very much part of the Sale family.”


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