World Rugby boss Bill Beaumont says a vaccine for Covid-19 would be important for the game to resume with ‘absolute confidence’.
Rugby competitions the world over were brought to an abrupt halt with various suspensions due to the coronavirus pandemic.
But the game is set to systematically resume with New Zealand’s localised tournament set to kick off mid-June, while Australia is also on course to restart the game in July.
South African players are expected to be able to start training in June but will only be allowed to compete when the country reaches level 1 lockdown. Meanwhile English clubs will get back in training by the end of the week, with the Premiership scheduled to restart at the end of July in a best-case scenario.
But Beaumont says he is wary of the hasty return to action because he believes that risks can’t be completely mitigated.
‘In New Zealand, where is no more coronavirus in the country, they are resuming full physical contact rugby in a couple of weeks,’ Beaumont told the BBC.
‘But it’s only when we get testing, vaccines that I think we can be absolutely confident. Because of the physical aspect of the game of rugby, it makes it very, very difficult. We are told we have to keep two metres apart. Well, you just can’t do that on a rugby field,’ he explained.
Photo: World Rugby