- South African Rugby has issued a statement to confirm that amateur and club rugby remains suspended following the adjusted Level 4 lockdown regulations
- SA Rugby's pronouncement follows a speech made by President Cyril Ramaphosa that the country will remain on Level 4 for another two weeks
- CEO Jurie Roux has also urged the general public to also play their part whilst saying provincial games will continue under tight regulations
In the wake of an announcement by South African president Cyril Ramaphosa that the country will remain on adjusted Level 4 lockdown, SA Rugby has immediately suspended all club and amateur rugby matches.
In a statement to Briefly News sports desk, SA Rugby said due to the new adjustments, it is very important for all rugby stakeholders to remain vigilant.
This also comes after the rugby governing body commended its 14 member unions last in June for proactively halting all forms of the club and amateur rugby in the wake of the current third wave of the coronavirus pandemic.
SA Rugby’s CEO Jurie Roux addresses Covid-19 concerns
In the statement, Roux has also made a clarion call to the general public to play their part in ensuring the country emerges from the pandemic. He said:
“The fact that our national government has extended the lockdown for two more weeks is a clear indication that we must stay vigilant in our efforts to do our part to curb the spread of the pandemic. The safety-first approach is imperative as many are feeling the effects of the pandemic amongst their own ranks and by extending the suspension, we lookout for all the role players – including the general public not involved in rugby.
"Even though the Government Gazette allows for club rugby to continue, the health, safety and wellbeing of our players, coaches, officials and others come first and all forms of the club and amateur rugby, therefore, remain suspended until 31 July 2021, when SA Rugby will reassess the situation.”
On the other hand, the association has also confirmed that provincial competitions will continue but under strict adherence to all relevant protocols, and changes to the schedule will be made if necessary.
Springboks hopeful that skipper Siya Kolisi will return for the first Test
Looking at news regarding the national side, it has come to the attention of Briefly News that Kolisi is still quarantining following positive Covid-19 tests.
However, the 2019 World Cup champions remain confident of having the majority of the players in harness for the first Test against the British & Irish Lions on July 24. SA Rugby Rassie Erasmus said according to News24:
"Siya and a few others might make it. It's possible that some of the players might immediately slot in, while others take a little more time to get the engines going. Some will be back in time, others might only be ready from the second Test onwards."
Captain Siya Kolisi tests positive for Covid-19 along with other Springbok players
Looking at recent reports, Briefly News reported that that South Africa captain Siya Kolisi is one of six players to test positive for Covid-19, putting the Springboks' preparations for their upcoming series against the British and Irish Lions in jeopardy.
The latest cases to be confirmed include Kolisi, Dan Du Preez, Ox Nche, Bongi Mbonambi, Scarra Ntubeni, and Makazole Mapimpi, as well as three members of the team management.
It brings the total number of employees and players infected with Covid to more than 20. Following six days of isolation and six rounds of PCR testing, a substantial percentage of the 46-man squad will be permitted to return to training according to Sky Sports News.
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