England’s Fourie putting off relegation thoughts

England and Leeds flanker Hendre Fourie says that he is focused on his team’s next Premiership match against Northampton Saints and will decide on his future after the match.


Leeds look destined to be relegated from the Premiership but Fourie plans to hang on for as long as he can before leaving the club if they are relegated.


“I’m just thinking about this game at the moment.” Fourie told the Yorkshire evening post.


“There’s a lot of things depending on the outcome of Saturday.


“Get this game out of the way and we win and there’s going to be no decisions to be made.”


England hooker Steve Thompson has already agreed to leave the club and will join London Wasps.


If Leeds are still at the bottom of the Premiership after the Northampton match Fourie says he will meet with the club and his representatives next week.


Ideally though Fourie wants to stay with Leeds but going down would severely impact on his world cup chances.


“I think it’s an awesome place to play at; we just need a better rugby team and results going our way. It’s been a long journey and I’d like to continue on it.


“Leeds can be one of the better clubs. Other people need to buy into that and maybe see what it is like up here.


“If we can a few good players in certain positions, I think we can do that.”


Fourie has also insisted that the current system of promotion and relegation – expected to remain until 2016 – is flawed and feels the Premier Rugby and RFU overlords should adopt a franchise system along the lines of the one currently operated in rugby league.


He said: “It’s the only (rugby) place in the world that still has promotion and relegation.


“What the league (Super League) has done has been pretty awesome for English rugby league globally.


“When I came over for the first time to the UK, there were the bottom teams fighting and scrapping for relegation and the top teams, like Leeds, winning three championships in a row.


“Now, the likes of Castleford, Huddersfield and Warrington are all in finals and playing in the top half and beating Leeds Rhinos, while the likes of Bradford Bulls aren’t one of the top teams around (anymore) either.


“That’s just because teams aren’t afraid of relegation. League has gone from strength to strength, so why not give it a try?


“There’s also only one (union) team that can be promoted from the Championship at the end of this season as the other (three) teams don’t fit the criteria, so there’s another flaw there in the system.


“If there’s no relegation, you will also breed a lot more young English players and you don’t have to go for the big guns from the southern hemisphere to ensure your team doesn’t get relegated.”

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