The Guinness A League
was launched in 2003. It runs parallel to the Guinness Premiership
. Split into North and South conferences, it comprises 13 sides. Premiership rugby union
clubs select players from their Academy and First Team squads to make up their A League teams. This gives both young and experienced players the opportunity to play competitive rugby week in week out. Players from feeder clubs are allowed to play under dual registration for additional development benefit.
After the conferences are complete the top Northern side meets the top Southern side to decide the championship.
The League looks likely to not continue into the 2008/09 season due to lack of commitment from some of the Guinness Premiership sides.
These teams featured in the 2006-07 Guinness A League: