‘System for signing players must be improved’ – Dean Ryan

Date published: April 8 2020

Dragons director of rugby Dean Ryan has expressed his frustration at the process involved in keeping back-row Ross Moriarty at the region.

Welsh international Moriarty will stay at the Dragons after successfully lodging a wage appeal with the Welsh Rugby Union (WRU).

Ryan is pleased with the outcome but feels the system needs improving.

“I think everybody needs to learn from this, we can all work together to make this a simpler process and ultimately avoid the delays we’ve had,” he told the BBC.

“I don’t think it will be particularly helpful to just air my views, we’ve made points to the relevant bodies and we would hope those points are considered and factored into how things move forward.”

Moriarty, who joined the Dragons from Premiership outfit Gloucester in 2018, was part of a dispute brought on by the WRU’s new pay-banding system as a way to determine players’ wages.

That resulted in Moriarty being linked with clubs outside of Wales, but he stayed on at the Dragons.

“I wouldn’t say I was close to leaving. Obviously I had talks and that’s natural for any professional sportsman to have talks with other teams,” said Moriarty.

Ryan started his reign as Dragons boss at the start of the season and Moriarty said his impact on the side was one of the reasons he opted to sign a new deal.

“There was a new feel around the place, and it was a positive one and that’s what I’m looking for,” added Moriarty.

His decision followed news that Wales lock Cory Hill is joining Cardiff Blues next season.

Ryan said he bears no grudge towards Hill over his decision to leave the region.

“Players make choices at whatever stage in their career. I can only wish Cory well,” he said.

“It’s sad when players move on, but I think it’s important you thank them for their contribution and wish them well.

“I think the conversations with Ross were always about if we can be the platform to make him better, be the platform to support him on the Wales front and continue to drive him at international level.”