Much have been said about the release of international players after an article was publish this morning on Toulon wanting Brian Habana being release from Springbok duty so that he will be available for his club.
To take out only certain bits and pieces of the IRB Regulation 9 are exactly what politicians like to do during election campaigns. We will be able to pull the regulation to pieces so that it suit anybody’s perspective on the issue at hand.
The plain and simple explanation of this is that any player that is selected for a National team in any age group must be released for international duty. Both club and national team benefits from this as the player adds value to both organisations by playing for his country’s national team. The Castle rugby Championship falls under the IRB tournaments as do the 6 Nations, British and Irish Tours and end of year tours.
A player can go back to his club when he is not selected for a match, 23 or injured. The national team can however release a player during a bye, but this is at the discression of the national team.
If you want to read the full 26 pages document on Regalation 9, you can download it http://www.irb.com/mm/document/lawsregs/regulations/04/23/27/42327_pdf.pdf
Hope that clears up a few concerns