Worcester boss says safety must be priority for Sale match

(Reuters) – Worcester Warriors director of rugby Alan Solomons has said player safety must take priority when deciding whether their Premiership Rugby game against Sale Sharks goes ahead.

a man wearing a suit and tie: Premiership - Worcester Warriors v Bristol Bears

Premiership – Worcester Warriors v Bristol Bears

A cluster of positive COVID-19 tests at Sale prompted the Premiership to postpone their final league match against Worcester to Wednesday from Sunday, while Gloucester’s game against Northampton was cancelled due to Saints players self-isolating after facing Sale.

The Rugby Football Union (RFU) has launched a probe into how Sale returned 19 positive COVID-19 tests, with 16 of them from the playing group.

“When you have 19 … test positive, that to me represents a cluster, … it’s a huge red flag and a fairly serious situation for any club to find themselves in,” Solomons told Planet Rugby.

“We’re now in the hands of Premiership Rugby, the RFU and Public Health England, all of whom I will rely upon to make the right decision.

“They have a duty of care to act in the best interests of player’s health and welfare, and the same for their families and loved ones. There’s a decision we must reach and one that goes beyond rugby itself.”

Solomons said his team would be ready for the game if it does go ahead on Wednesday.

“… Here at Warriors we’ve been doing our best to be compliant – we’ve kept the place spotlessly clean, the boys and backroom have stayed within our bubble,” he added.

“One thing I will say, we’ll be up for this if it goes ahead and we won’t coast.”

(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford)

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