ADVERTISEMENT
RugbyDump
REGISTER
LOGIN
ADVERTISEMENT
RugbyDump
Wednesday Dec 30, 2020

London Irish can't field a team due to coronavirus so become the latest fixture to be cancelled

The Gallagher Premiership continues to be hit hard by the nation’s escalating coronavirus crisis after two round five fixtures were cancelled by outbreaks at Harlequins and London Irish.

ADVERTISEMENT

Quins’ trip to Worcester on Friday was first to fall after the Twickenham club revealed they would be unable to pick a front row because of one positive test and its domino effect on other players needing to self-isolate as part of contact tracing protocols.

And for a second successive weekend, Irish will be inactive after they returned a number of positives from the latest round of testing which, combined with their contact tracing procedures, means they cannot field a team against Northampton on Sunday.

The news comes on the day that Premiership Rugby (PRL) reported its highest number of positive cases since testing began in July.

A total of 951 players and management from the 12 top-flight clubs were tested with 33 people from 10 clubs returning positives, 24 of them players and nine members of staff.

The PA news agency understands that PRL has no plans at this stage to implement a ‘circuit-breaker’, but all measures will be considered by the body responsible for running the league.

In total, four of this season’s 30 Premiership games have now been cancelled because of coronavirus.

ADVERTISEMENT

Quins returned one positive test for COVD-19 after their Boxing day defeat by Bristol but the knock-on effect has been to whittle down their options at prop and hooker to the point they are unable to play.

All seven players affected enter a 10-day isolation period and in addition, the club have stood down the entire squad from training for a week in order to “minimise the use and possible contamination of the training facility”.

Irish have shut down their training ground in response to the continued spread of COVID-19 through their ranks a week after they were forced to cancel their match against Bath at the Recreation Ground.

However, director of rugby Declan Kidney insists it is the intervention of Public Health England and not a shortage of players that prevents them from running out at Brentford Community Stadium.

ADVERTISEMENT

“It’s obviously a huge disappointment for everyone connected to the club that we’re unable to go ahead with the fixture,” Kidney said.

“We’re disappointed because we feel we still had a strong group of players to select from, but due to Public Health England guidelines, we’ve been told we’re not allowed to play the game.

“It’s clear that the entire country, especially here in London which is the epicentre of the virus, is at a critical juncture with this current phase of the pandemic.

“Of course it is frustrating, but the health and safety of the players, staff, supporters and public at large is our priority at this time as the country continues to navigate its way through the pandemic.”

Under PRL regulations Worcester and Northampton are set to receive four points and, as the clubs responsible for the cancellations, Harlequins and London Irish two.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE:

Video Spacer

Related Articles

  • 11 WEEKS AGO

    Manu Tuilagi will play a surprising role...

  • 11 WEEKS AGO

    Australia say they're the safe bet for RWC...

  • 11 WEEKS AGO

    Russell believes Scotland can become a Top...



ADVERTISEMENT

Great Tries

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    Ulster score counter attack try of the season contender in Champions Cup

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    WATCH: Smith provides the goods once again with late Quins comeback in Europe

  • 2 WEEKS AGO

    McKenzie impresses for Suntory on league debut in Japan

  • 2 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: Ridiculous dummy-offload sets up last gasp bonus point for Bears

  • 3 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: Length-of-field chase for charge down results in great try

View All

Big Hits & Dirty Play

  • 3 DAYS AGO

    WATCH: Curry learns not to mess with De Allende

  • 3 DAYS AGO

    WATCH: Worried-looking Marler survives stamp scare during epic Quins win

  • 5 DAYS AGO

    Dangerous challenge on Kockott shows how contentious in the air challenges are

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    WATCH: Fijian powerhouse runs straight over Murray and Conway

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    WATCH: The harsh Umaga red card which has divided the rugby world

View All

See It To Believe It

  • 2 DAYS AGO

    WATCH: Rugby 22 gameplay footage ahead of January release

  • 5 DAYS AGO

    Some of the most controversial red cards in rugby history

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    WATCH: Embarrassing blunder in Japanese Top League is nothing but hilarious

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    WATCH: Smith provides the goods once again with late Quins comeback in Europe

  • 2 WEEKS AGO

    McKenzie impresses for Suntory on league debut in Japan

View All

Funnies

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    WATCH: Embarrassing blunder in Japanese Top League is nothing but hilarious

  • 3 WEEKS AGO

    The naughty language of Dane Coles which most fans missed during last year's Ireland defeat

  • 3 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: 15 moments of 'sh*thousery' which probably shouldn't be tolerated in the modern game

  • 5 WEEKS AGO

    O'Mahony tells Rory Kockott to 'pi$s off' in hilarious interaction in front of referee

  • 6 WEEKS AGO

    Bizarre scenes as Harry Potter performs disappearing act against Bordeaux

View All

Amateur

  • 64 WEEKS AGO

    Viral video of Scottish club brawl goes down a storm with rugby community

  • 101 WEEKS AGO

    RUGBYDUMP BLITZ: This Best of the Week round up is sure to entertain you

  • 102 WEEKS AGO

    RD BLITZ - Disaster, just when it looked so promising...

  • 102 WEEKS AGO

    That glorious moment that will live on forever, like it or not

  • 102 WEEKS AGO

    RD Blitz - PROP'S Lionel Messi wizardy creates incredible try

View All

Player Features

  • 4 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: American cross-over athletes get recruited off the street to try rugby

  • 14 WEEKS AGO

    New Tongan Thor montage is five minutes of mesmerising hits and skills

  • 27 WEEKS AGO

    A deeper look at Jason Robinson's incredible path to the top

  • 48 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: Bumping off tacklers and taking high balls, Rob Kearney had an impressive Super Rugby debut

  • 54 WEEKS AGO

    Brian Moore on money in modern rugby and how it should never be compared to 'outlier' football

View All