The English RFU have announced the end of the season for the country’s league, cup and club rugby with the exception of the Premiership.
An open letter from RFU chief executive Bill Sweeney to England’s clubs explained the decision, which will impact the Championship and community rugby.
There are still ongoing discussions over the resumption of the Premiership.
‘In order to provide clarity and to assist with immediate and longer term planning, the Rugby Football Union is announcing the end of the 2019/20 rugby season for all league, cup and county rugby in England,’ Sweeney wrote.
‘The only exception to this is the Premiership, who we are in active discussions with to review possible best next steps.
‘When current government advice on social distancing measures changes, we will naturally encourage rugby training and friendlies to recommence.
‘I would like to personally thank everyone for their swift actions in suspending rugby activity, this is not an easy time and I know many of you will have concerns that go beyond the game.
‘We are working through the implications of ending the season early and have instigated a thorough process to ensure fair and balanced outcomes for the game. We will communicate these outcomes by the middle of April.’
Meanwhile, Major League Rugby, the 12-team tournament in North America, announced that the remainder of the season will be cancelled.
Health and safety guidelines from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have banned large gatherings to combat the Covid-19 crisis.
A week after issuing a 30-day pause to the regular season, the rugby union league decided to shut down any attempt to restart the season and begin preparing for 2021.
‘I am saddened to announce that the remainder of the 2020 season is cancelled,’ MLR commissioner George Killebrew said.
‘We believe it is ultimately the correct decision as we factored in health and safety risks for all parties. I want to ensure our fans that there is no doubt MLR will be back in 2021 and will emerge bigger and better than ever before,’ he added.
‘We will be using this time as an opportunity to grow all aspects of MLR and we’re excited to continue this journey into 2021 and for many years to come.’
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