The Grand Slam winner is one of the few Welsh players that are playing abroad currently with under 60 caps, because his contract was signed before Wales implemented the ruling. As he only has 40 caps, a player in his position would usually have to move back to Wales at the end of his contract to keep his hopes of playing for the national team alive, like what Josh Adams has done at Worcester.
However, the Premiership leaders have found a way around this by extending Francis’ contract rather than giving him a new one. This has allowed them to keep hold of a top player, and for Francis to keep his international career alive.
In light of this contract wrangling, both English and Welsh fans have given their opinion about the entire situation on Twitter. Not only do some fans feel that the ruling is unfair on players, as they should be allowed to make the most money in their short careers, but the manner in which clubs are able to work around the ruling makes a mockery of it.
Continue reading below…
This is what the fans are saying:
Clever of him to sign a contract that rolls over rather than terminates
— Wilt (@Wilttwits) April 3, 2019
Please insert meme for Harry Enfield character who shouts “They’re making it up as they go along!” https://t.co/CpCbVSnJuq
— Ceri (@cezzapazza) April 3, 2019
Tom Francis has extended his stay at Exeter and is still eligible to play for Wales even though he's only got 40 caps bcoz it's not a new contract and he and Exeter are exercising a 'two year extension' clause in the contract he signed 3 years ago ?. https://t.co/AQwca0sNZK
— Brynt (@JohnBrynt) April 3, 2019
What a farce
— craig godsall (@sportabertawe) April 3, 2019
Good, ridiculous & embarrassing rules that rugby have regarding players playing outside their Country. It would not happen in football. It is a hard brutal game & can be a short career due to injury players need to earn what they can. Simple solution contract them to the union ?
— Sean (@Seany1969) April 3, 2019
While this convoluted system has left some Welsh fans scratching their heads, the Exeter fans are happy with this news.
The fans are praising the club for managing to keep hold of Francis and working their way around the system.
Moreover, they are happy to keep a player of that quality at Sandy Park. Since joining the Chiefs since 2014, he has helped them win the Premiership, and established himself as a favourite under Warren Gatland for the national team, and is in a good position to earn more silverware this season with the Chiefs.
This is what the Exeter fans are saying:
Quality player management yet again from Rob Baxter
— TheChiefsTribe (@Exechief) April 3, 2019
Excellent news! https://t.co/GLWPi0m8Kk
— Donna (@DonnaJHart11) April 3, 2019
Sorry he is ours, you can’t have him! So happy he is staying with the chiefs. ?
— Victoria Squires (@VikkiSquires19) April 3, 2019
— Norman Hartnell (@norman_hartnell) April 3, 2019
Webb signed a new contract (post new policy, arguably) whereas Francis got an extension to his pre policy 2016 contract.
Savvy business practice by Exeter you have to say ? ? ?
Great ? to hear such a good player like donnytommy will still be able to stay with the chiefs ?????
— Jim Lawrence (@dogster01) April 3, 2019
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