Coronavirus: London Irish players and staff to take 25% pay cut

London Irish players celebrate a try
London Irish, promoted from the Championship last season, were eighth in the Premiership table when the season was halted

London Irish are the latest Premiership club to reduce player and staff wages to help ease the financial strain caused by the coronavirus outbreak.

Several top-flight teams have said they will cut payments by 25% from 1 April, with Bristol Bears announcing an undisclosed reduction in pay.

On 16 March, Premiership Rugby said that the competition would be suspended for the subsequent five weeks.

London Irish employees below a certain level of earnings would be unaffected.

“It is in times of adversity that we need to look out for each other, and this is something this club has always valued,” said chief executive Brian Facer.

“Now, however, there is a need to look after the club that has been in existence for 122 years.

“Covid-19 is having an impact on all businesses across multiple industries, including rugby, as we have heard over the last few days from our counterparts in the Premiership.

“No-one knows for certain when we will return to normality and having taken all factors into account, the club has taken the difficult decision to reduce salaries of staff, players and coaches by 25%.

“We have deliberated long and hard about this and our first thoughts were always on the wellbeing and mental and physical health of all our staff.

“I would like to commend them for their understanding in putting the club before themselves, they are all a credit to our organisation.”