Outgoing World Rugby chairman believes Six Nations needs promotion/relegation system

Bernard Lapasset's idea would allow tier 2 nations like Romania, Georgia and Russia to compete

Outgoing World Rugby chairman believes Six Nations needs promotion/relegation system

Image:Francois Mori / AP/Press Association Images

World Rugby chairman, Bernard Lapasset, believes the Six Nations should embrace a relegation trapdoor system to improve the quality of the competition.

The measure would allow tier 2 rugby teams such as Georgia, Russia and Romania to take part in the tournament.

"We need to change the format of the Six Nations,” he told Le Figaro.

“If it wants to look to the future, this competition should open up and take on a relegation and promotion system.

“Either directly or via a play-off, but we must quickly give a vision, a hope for the [other] teams there.”

The trio of prospective participants currently compete in the European Nations Cup and the calls come after another poor performance by Italy in the Six Nations.

Conor O'Shea has been installed as head coach and will lead the Azzurri into next year's Six Nations in the hope of a more competitive performance.