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Last Updated: Tuesday, 10 July 2007, 16:18 GMT 17:18 UK
Edinburgh call for SRU settlement
Hugo Southwell and Mike Blair celebrate a sponsorship deal before the dispute
The bubbly has gone flat for Edinburgh during the summer
Edinburgh owner Bob Carruthers insists independent mediation is the only way to resolve the ugly dispute between the club and the Scottish Rugby Union.

The row centres primarily on the distribution of Magners League and Heineken Cup fees and led to Edinburgh resigning their SRU membership.

The SRU have since charged Edinburgh with misconduct for the withdrawal of players from the Scotland squad.

"It needs to be resolved. Our proposal is mediation," said Carruthers.

Edinburgh deny breaking any agreement by removing players from the World Cup training squad.

And it is unclear just how the club are answerable to charges if they have resigned as an associate member of the SRU.

We have formally offered mediation on a number of occasions to SRU plc and we don't understand why they won't take up the offer
Bob Carruthers

Carruthers added: "At nine o'clock yesterday morning we were not affiliated to the SRU, then at four o'clock in the afternoon we were affiliated because they called for disciplinary action against us.

"This has caused a great deal of anxiety to the players, staff and sponsors.

"As regards the disciplinary meeting, we are happy to submit to a panel provided it is an independent arbiter."

The SRU earlier claimed that the resignation would bar Edinburgh from playing in the Magners League or Heineken Cup.

But the club remain confident they will be involved in domestic and European competition next season and continue to insist that the SRU owes them a six-figure sum.

"The Celtic League confirmed that we would be playing in the Celtic League and Bath confirmed that they would be fulfilling their fixture with us," said Carruthers.

"We have been speaking to clubs all around the world and they were expecting to see us in the Heineken Cup and looking forward to it.

"The only people in the world who seem to think that Edinburgh wouldn't be in the Magners League or the Heineken Cup is SRU plc."

Edinburgh escalated the row when they prevented 12 of their players training with their Scotland team-mates last week.

MY SPORT: DEBATE

But Carruthers, who, prior to the latest round of bickering, said the situation "would be moved on in a massive way" on Tuesday, confirmed Edinburgh will release players for World Cup training later this week.

"Clearly this is a dispute that needs to be resolved and resolved quickly," he said.

"There are arbitration firms all around Edinburgh, you could have this sorted in 10 minutes.

"It must be an independent firm of arbiters who look at this dispute and resolve it in the best interests of Edinburgh and Scottish rugby.

"We have formally offered mediation on a number of occasions to SRU plc and we don't understand why they won't take up the offer.

"Are they really going to spend their limited resources in the Court of Session when literally, tomorrow, two lawyers and two blokes could sit down and resolve this whole matter?

"The only other option is the Court of Session and that would be absolutely crazy."



SEE ALSO
Edinburgh resign from Scots Union
09 Jul 07 |  Scottish
Edinburgh face SRU closure threat
05 Jul 07 |  Scottish
Edinburgh chairman resigns in row
05 Jul 07 |  Scottish


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