Women’s Six Nations: Matches may permanently move away from men's event

By Sara OrchardBBC Sport
Wales against Italy
Women's Six Nations matches take place on the same weekends as the men's but rarely at the same venues

Details of the 2021 Women's Six Nations will be announced at the start of February.

The tournament was delayed mainly because of travel and testing issues with most players being amateur.

With games now expected to start in spring, organisers are looking at permanently moving the tournament away from the men's weekends.

Tournament chief executive Ben Morel added he was "extremely confident" a UK broadcast partner would be announced.

Also speaking at the men's Six Nations launch Scotland captain Stuart Hogg added his voice to the #icare social media campaignexternal-link to promote women's rugby.

The Exeter Chiefs full-back said he was a big supporter of the Scottish women's team and that it would "be brilliant" for women to have their own playing window.

"To have their own time, would inspire more people to watch, play, and ultimately grow the women's game," Hogg said.

The original plan to announce the new fixtures by the end of January will not be met.

Morel explained he saw the women's tournament as an "absolute priority" and an "exciting opportunity for growth".

"In order for the women's tournament to be in the limelight we are strongly thinking about moving it to a specific window," he said.

"I am a strong believer that a specific window would enhance and give the appropriate visibility.

"At the same time - not by design, obviously - but we are going to be in a position to test that this year because of the rescheduling of the tournament."

However it was confirmed the Women's Six Nations remains without a sponsor despite "several really positive discussions" with potential partners.

Morel added: "It's a matter of finding the right partner that will embrace the opportunity, not a question of finding a partner for the sake of finding a partner.

"It's finding the right one that will help elevate the championship for many years to come."

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