Catalans game with Leeds falls victim of coronavirus – again

Catalans home game against Leeds, scheduled for Monday September 7, has been postponed due to the COVID-19 outbreak within the Dragons camp.

Three players and a member of their non-playing staff tested positive for coronavirus earlier this week, and the squad was put in isolation, causing the cancellation of this Saturday’s game against Wigan.

Super League chiefs moved quickly to replace Catalans with Castleford, who will take on the Warriors in the first game of the weekend at the Halliwell Jones Stadium.

But health information has now determined that the Dragons squad must self-isolate for 14 days, which would take them beyond the scheduled fixture with Leeds – previously called off in the early stages of the pandemic, when Leeds decided not to travel due to one of their players showing symptoms.

It was due to be the first Super League game to be played in front of a crowd since the lockdown – with France having lifted restrictions on gatherings, which had enabled the Dragons to schedule their remaining home games to be played in Perpignan, while other fixtures remain at central venues behind closed doors in the UK.

A statement said: “A decision on rescheduling the Catalans Dragons versus Leeds Rhinos game will be made in due course, and the RFL and Super League will now actively explore all available options to avoid any further disruption to the fixture calendar.”

Back in March, Leeds opted not to travel to Perpignan on medical grounds after loanee forward Joe Greenwood had self-isolated showing symptoms, just days after the RFL board had decided the game would go ahead behind closed doors following a ban in France on gatherings of more than 1,000 spectators.

Leeds were later cleared of any wrongdoing by the RFL, who said they would not face disciplinary action for refusing to travel because of the exceptional circumstances.

The Super League season was subsequently suspended, two days after the original scheduled game.

1 Comment

  1. Is it time to call a halt to the season now before it descends into an utter farce with cancelled games being re-cancelled then possibly re-cancelled again?
    I wander how many games will be pushed back causing an even bigger backlog later in the season when the players are already expected to play midweek. Not only that but as we know this illness surely affects people who have had it for a long period afterwards, is it fair to ask players to retake the field soon after having tested positive for covid especially now that the game has speeded up substantially with the 6 again rule and no scrums?

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