Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

It's Home James for AWOL Haskell

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

It's Home James for AWOL Haskell

Article excerpt

STADE Francais last night demanded England release flanker James Haskell immediately so he can play in Saturday's clash with Toulouse. The 24-year-old has started all of England's three RBS 6 Nations matches so far but, playing outside of England, is not subject to the Rugby Football Union's player release contract with Premier Rugby.

The RFU claim they have negotiated an individual deal with Stade - but the Top 14 club deny that any such agreement exists and insist the player is duty-bound to report for training this week.

A strongly-worded statement on their official website, www.stade.fr, read: "On Monday, Stade Francais - finding England international James Haskell absent from training - asked the back-rower to return immediately to Paris.

"This period is not provided for in the IRB's international windows and Stade Francais have a big match against Stade Toulousain on Saturday.

"The RFU responded that they will refuse to release Haskell on the grounds that an agreement was signed between them and Stade Francais. …

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