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Volume 6 No. 214
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French Rugby Side Bayonne Confirm Merger Talks With Biarritz Have Been Called Off

French rugby side Bayonne President Alain Afflelou has announced that "plans for a merger between his club and Basque rivals Biarritz have reached a dead end," according to SKY SPORTS. Earlier this month Afflelou and Biarritz President Serge Blanco "indicated that they would look into the possibility of creating a single, united Basque club." There has, however, been staunch resistance from both sets of supporters -- "the rivalry in the Basque country is one of the fiercest in the world game." On Wednesday, Afflelou said in a statement, "The conditions mentioned in our first exchange are no longer present. I cannot agree to take our club, which is legally, economically and fiscally healthy, up a blind path" (SKY SPORTS, 12/11).