Ospreys forfeit Racing clash following Covid outbreak

Competition organisers EPCR confirmed Saturday’s Pool A match in Paris is off, with the hosts awarded a 28-0 win and five competition points; Announcement follows Leinster’s match away to Montpellier on Friday being called off as well

Last Updated: 17/12/21 12:39pm

Saturday's Heineken Champions Cup match between Racing 92 and Ospreys has been cancelled

Saturday’s Heineken Champions Cup match between Racing 92 and Ospreys has been cancelled

Ospreys’ trip to Racing 92 is the latest Heineken Champions Cup match to be cancelled after the Welsh club suffered a Covid-19 outbreak in the squad.

The news came on Friday morning, the day before Racing were due to host Ospreys at La Defense Arena and follows Leinster clash with Montpellier being called off on Thursday evening.

Under the rules of the Champions Cup, Racing have been awarded a 28-0 win and five competition points in Pool A after European Professional Club Rugby were informed by Ospreys they would be unable to fulfil the fixture.

Ospreys forfeit Racing clash following Covid outbreak

Leinster upset at Montpellier cancellation | Bristol wait

Leinster have expressed their disappointment at Friday’s Heineken Champions Cup clash with Montpellier being cancelled and a 28-0 victory handed to the French side.

“EPCR has been informed by Ospreys that they have a recorded a number of positive tests for Covid-19 among their playing squad and as a consequence, the club is not in a position to safely fulfil its Heineken Champions Cup, Round 2 fixture against Racing 92 scheduled for Saturday (18 December),” a statement from the competition organisers said.

“The Pool A fixture at Paris La Defense Arena is therefore cancelled with Racing 92 awarded the match on a 28-0, five match points basis, in accordance with the Tournament Rules.

“EPCR would like to emphasise that awarding the match to Racing 92 is a tournament management measure with the objective of ensuring that all fixtures in the 2021/22 Heineken Champions Cup are accounted for, and not a sanction.”

Fellow Welsh regional sides Scarlets and Cardiff have been affected by Covid regulations too, with the former being forced to forfeit their opening Champions Cup against Bristol Bears with players and staff quarantining following their return from South Africa where they had been due to play in the United Rugby Championship.

Cardiff, meanwhile, fielded a team including academy and semi-professional players in their match against reigning European champions Toulouse last Saturday due to a significant number of senior squad members and staff in quarantine for the same reason, going down 39-7.

Even with the Covid-19 outbreak, Ospreys had still been hoping to take to the field against Racing in Paris. However, head coach Toby Booth had previously stated the health of everyone at the club would always by the priority.

“What matters most is the safety of our people,” Booth said in his pre-match press conference prior to Saturday’s game being called off.

“We will protect our people as best we can. As I said last week around the Covid stuff with the Scarlets and Cardiff, there’s bigger things than rugby at times.”

Read more here SkySports | News

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