Barbarians vs Samoa cancelled due to Covid

Saturday’s scheduled rugby clash between Barbarians and Samoa at Twickenham was cancelled 90 minutes before kick-off due to a number of coronavirus cases in the invitational side.

A statement released by the Rugby Football Union (RFU) said four players and two members of staff had tested positive for Covid-19.

Scotland back rower Ryan Wilson had been due to captain a side including South African World Cup-winners Duane Vermeulen, Malcolm Marx and Steven Kitshoff, as well as Australia internationals James O’Connor and Nic White.

The match was set to serve as a swansong for Ireland great and two-time British & Irish Lions tourist Rob Kearney, who was named among the replacements and planned to retire following the fixture.

The newly vacant kick-off slot will be taken by a game between the Barbarians women’s team and a Springbok women’s XV, which had been due to start at 5:15pm GMT (7:15pm SAT).

“Due to six confirmed Covid-19 cases in the Barbarians men’s team [four players and two members of staff], the Professional Game Testing Oversight Group has advised that the fixture scheduled to be played against Samoa at 2:30 pm today is unable to proceed,” the RFU said in a statement.

“We appreciate that this is an extremely disappointing situation for the many fans due to attend, but the safety of all members of both teams is our priority.”

© Agence France-Presse

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Dylan Jack