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Grounded Leinster will continue to train as rugby grinds to halt

 

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After their two-match tour of South Africa was cancelled, Leinster will remain at their UCD base while it remains open and, if it becomes unavailable, can switch to their Centre of Excellence at Energia Park. Photo: Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

After their two-match tour of South Africa was cancelled, Leinster will remain at their UCD base while it remains open and, if it becomes unavailable, can switch to their Centre of Excellence at Energia Park. Photo: Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

SPORTSFILE

After their two-match tour of South Africa was cancelled, Leinster will remain at their UCD base while it remains open and, if it becomes unavailable, can switch to their Centre of Excellence at Energia Park. Photo: Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

Leinster and Ulster will immediately switch focus to their Heineken Champions Cup quarter-finals against Saracens and Toulouse and continue to train as normal after their Guinness PRO14 matches were cancelled along with the rest of the Irish rugby season yesterday.

Following the government's announcement that gatherings of more than 500 people are not permitted in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, PRO14 put the league on hold and the IRFU announced that all fixtures would be called off until March 29 at the earliest.

Although club and schools teams will not be allowed to train between now and that date, the professional teams will continue to prepare for the rest of their season.

Cancelled

After their two-match tour of South Africa was cancelled, Leinster will remain at their UCD base while it remains open and, if it becomes unavailable, can switch to their Centre of Excellence at Energia Park.

Their game against Saracens is still scheduled to go ahead at the Aviva Stadium on April 4 but, like all of the European quarter-finals, it is in major doubt due to the potential for an extension of the ban on public gatherings.

Although tomorrow's Six Nations match between Wales and Scotland is still scheduled to go ahead, the rest of the rugby season has been plunged into chaos and there is a real danger that competitions will have to be abandoned given the tight schedule.

The PRO14 has been suspended indefinitely, while the AIL is on hold for two weeks at least. Schools Cup finals across Leinster, Ulster and Munster have been postponed.

"We have made this decision with everyone's welfare foremost in our minds," PRO14 tournament director David Jordan said.

Irish Independent