Gordon D’Arcy: Provincial priorities all that matter as national dreams are put on ice

French clubs will provide a better idea of where the Irish provinces currently stand

Racing92’s Fijian centre Virimi Vakatawa  is congratulated by his team-mates after scoring  a try against Saracens last weekend. Photograph:  Martin Bureau/AFP/Getty

Racing92’s Fijian centre Virimi Vakatawa is congratulated by his team-mates after scoring a try against Saracens last weekend. Photograph: Martin Bureau/AFP/Getty

Don’t book flights to Marseilles just yet. At least wait until we see how Leinster, Munster, Ulster and Connacht cope with the incoming Top 14 clubs. Because a renaissance in French rugby might force the IRFU into altering the way the professional game is managed on the island.

A clean sweep on return to European rugby should be celebrated even if the opposition were poor. In some cases very poor. Each victory deserves genuine praise but the apparent good health of the provinces versus the latest World Cup failure, begs the question: where does it leave Irish rugby?

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