WALES' leading players have said they are "uncomfortable" that accepting pay cuts because of the coronavirus pandemic could "enable profiteering".

The WRPA have been in talks with the Professional Rugby Board, acting for the Welsh Rugby Union and regions, about further pay cuts.

Players agreed a three-month pay cut in April but the financial hit from the pandemic has led to discussions over longer reductions to salaries.

"The players fully understand the precarious position the game currently faces globally and are determined to be part of constructive dialogue to effect positive change in the game," said the WRPA in a statement.

"The players accept that financial uncertainty could be prolonged and as such, understand why long-term pay cuts have been mooted in the media.

"However, we would also point out that it is equally plausible for revenues to return more quickly should social distancing, and even a vaccine, allow.

"This uncertainty makes it very difficult for any party to predict what the future holds and as such any decisions on cuts or long term pay cuts are complex and need to be jointly explored and agreed."

The WRU intends to take out a loan because of the coronavirus crisis with the majority of it going to the regions.

"This is only right, as the international and professional game is the financial powerhouse of Welsh rugby," said chief executive Martyn Phillips.

With players key to driving the financial recovery, the WRPA believes they should be protected from long-term cuts.

Penarth Times:

"Our members will also have a justified view that they feel uncomfortable that financial sacrifices they may make now to help save the game, could enable profiteering in the long term from capital investment organisations that have recently invested in the game," said the statement.

"It should be equally acceptable and reasonable that if players are to effectively sacrifice and invest into the future of the game, that they too should see this sacrifice return long term.

"It would be unacceptable for players to help keep the game afloat only for others to make profits of the back of these sacrifices in the future.

"We feel it is important to note that it is the players who inspire revenues into the game.

"The professional game and its associated commercial agreements are the key revenue drivers to support the game in Wales.

"Without the resource generated by the players for the WRU, there would be no money for the community game. The only assets of real value are the players.

"Players should not be maligned for their value driven by the markets in the game by other administrators, nor should they be maligned for seeking their own value in that market."

The WRPA have called for a salary scale that "anticipates the upside as well as the downside" to allow players to share in the financial rewards of recovery.

"Players are not naive and immune to the current situation, as they have shown in responding collectively to the immediate crisis," continued the

"As the key assets in the game, the players must be seen as integral to the resolving the difficult position the Welsh game finds itself in.

"However, there has to be a consensual way forward that identifies the capacity for a return to increased revenue and reflects the players' value within it."