It's the down season in the rugby calendar, and apart from the entertainment on show on weekend mornings down south - there isn't too much happening in rugby right now.
That should mean that there isn't anything to get worked up about, and yet - yesterday's release of the Aviva Premiership fixtures riled up a large number of people across Europe and New Zealand?
Why? Well, the Premiership final is scheduled to take place a week before the Lions first game in New Zealand. That would mean that the majority of English (and a select few Welsh or Scottish players) wouldn't be able to play in the first test in the tour.
Ludicrous. No player should be forced to miss a moment of a @lionsofficial tour. https://t.co/WoqfLPQ5H7
— Scotty Stevenson (@sumostevenson) July 7, 2016
It comes before the Top 14 fixtures will be released, which would also eliminate more Welsh players from the first few games - and it isn't the first time that the domestic seasons are running into international window. The French national team was severely hampered by the Top 14 final running taking place on the same weekend that Ireland played their final test in South Africa.
The only way this intensifying club v country row can be stopped is if World Rugby incorporates a global calendar which would have even more defined periods between domestic and international games. There is hope that something could happen after 2019, but there are numerous stumbling blocks, as we've discussed many times.
Nothing can be done in time for the 2017 Lions tour - so expect to see the majority of PRO12 internationals playing in the first tour game against a Provincial Union XV.
See Also: World Rugby Looks Like It Might Collapse Without A Global Calendar Agreement
See Also: Stephen Jones Has Picked His Lions Squad And It Doesn't Make Any Sense
Picture credit: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE