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Friday Dec 18, 2020

Another Champions Cup match cancelled as 12 Bath players go into isolation

Bath’s Champions Cup clash against La Rochelle on Saturday has been cancelled with 12 of their players isolating after a positive coronavirus test at Scarlets.

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Bath were beaten 23-19 at home by Scarlets in their Champions Cup opener last weekend.

A statement from the Premiership club on Thursday said: “It is with deep disappointment that we announce the cancellation of this weekend’s Champions Cup fixture against La Rochelle.

“A member of Scarlets Rugby tested positive for COVID-19 this week and as a result, a total of 12 Bath Rugby players from last weekend’s matchday-23 have been named as close contacts and are now in isolation.

“Due to the impact on selection availability of forwards, it is not possible to safely fulfil the fixture on Saturday.

“When informed, Bath Rugby acted immediately to isolate the players concerned and has been in constant communication with Premiership Rugby, the RFU (Rugby Football Union), Public Health England and EPCR (European Professional Club Rugby).”

Bath said EPCR would now meet to decide the result of the fixture.

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Stuart Hooper, Bath’s director of rugby, said: “We are hugely disappointed that we are unable to play this fixture, but the health and safety of our staff, players and families – and that of La Rochelle’s rugby community must be our top priority.

“Our focus now is to continue to protect our people and to prepare for our upcoming Premiership fixture against London Irish on Boxing Day.”

The news comes after a coronavirus outbreak at Exeter led to the cancellation of their game against Toulouse and Glasgow Warriors’ fixture against Lyon.

Bath also said they had received one positive COVID-19 test this week from “an injured player who is not currently in training” and that “one further player was identified as a close contact”.

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