English RFU pushing for five year residency rule

World Rugby is currently reviewing the controversial rule

The head of England's Rugby Football Union (RFU) will be pushing for a change in the current World Rugby residency rule from three years to five.

Speaking in the Daily Telegraph, RFU Chief Executive Ian Ritchie said: "Our view will be, and this is subject to further discussion but it's coming up soon, that a five-year qualification is the optimum position to be in. There are other countries who will take a different view, I think, and that's up to them. 

"I think it should be five and that's what we'll be putting forward. If it stays at three then we'd have to think again and review it.

"We commit from a position, as do the French, from a large playing base and a large number of people to select from so some people will say you can afford to be hard line on this particular issue.

"If you have a small playing base, then I could well understand why somebody would like it to be less than that. Our position will be the five years.

"In an ideal world there would be universality of regulation and that there's a helpful way of dealing with this by moving the World Rugby regulations from three to five. So let's see how that goes," he added.