Rugby Championship teams forced to isolate due to Covid

Date published: September 28 2021 - Planet Rugby

All Blacks defence coach Scott McLeod has confirmed that Rugby Championship organisers have ordered New Zealand, South Africa, Argentina and hosts Australia’s players and staff to isolate in their hotels due to a Covid-19 outbreak in Brisbane.

According to McLeod, the teams are allowed to have closed training sessions outside their hotels but are not allowed to mix with the public.

“We’re not allowed out of the hotel except for essentials or medical visits,” he told Reuters in a video call from the team’s Gold Coast hotel.

“It’s something that’s unexpected but we’ve had it before and dealt with it really quickly.”

Brisbane is the capital city of the state of Queensland which reported four new Covid-19 cases on Tuesday. That includes a first case in nearly eight weeks where it is unclear where the source of the infection is.

Officials could order a lockdown

Queensland Chief Health Officer Jeannette Young revealed that officials could order a lockdown if more Covid-19 ases are reported over the next few days.

Last weekend, the four Rugby Championship nations played in a double-header in Townsville and the tournament is set to reach its conclusion this Saturday on the Gold Coast.

Several sporting events in Queensland are in doubt due to the outbreak and the Sheffield Shield cricket game between Queensland and Tasmania in Brisbane was called off on Tuesday just ahead of the coin toss.

There is also uncertainty over the NRL’s ‘Grand Final’ between the South Sydney Rabbitohs and Penrith Panthers which is scheduled to take place at Brisbane’s Suncorp Stadium on Sunday but it could be shifted to Townsville if required.