Munster's Guinness PRO14 fixture postponed due to coronavirus

Colm Kinsella, Rugby Correspondent

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Colm Kinsella, Rugby Correspondent

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ckinsella@limerickleader.ie

Munster's Guinness PRO14 fixture postponed due to coronavirus

Munster's upcoming away Guinness PRO14 fixture with Benetton Rugby has been postponed

ONE of Munster's upcoming Guinness PRO14 fixtures has been postponed due to the outbreak of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Competition organisers confirmed this Thursday that two Guinness PRO14 fixtures due to take place in Italy in Rounds 14 and 15 have been postponed due to the outbreak of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) in the northern part of the country.

One of the games to be postponed is Munster's scheduled meeting with Benetton Rugby at Stadio Monigo on Saturday, March 21.

The second game to be postponed is Zebre Rugby Club's clash with Connacht Rugby (originally scheduled for March 28)

The Italian government has now extended restrictions on sporting events until April 3 and the latest travel alerts from the Irish government's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade advise against non-essential travel to certain regions of Italy, including Veneto and Emilia-Romagna.

Consequently, PRO14 Rugby has taken this action in order to protect the well-being of our participating clubs' players, other staff and supporters, and provide some degree of certainty in an evolving situation. This decision is fully supported by the board of Celtic Rugby DAC.

Munster are also due to face Benetton Rugby at Musgrave Park on Friday, March 27 in a Guinness PRO14 fixture.

As none of these clubs are involved in EPCR competitions, PRO14 Rugby will aim to reschedule these matches on dates during the European weekends in April and May. PRO14 Rugby is currently engaged with EPCR to avoid any scheduling conflicts with European knock-out games.

Discussions are still on-going regarding the rescheduling of the postponed Round 13 fixtures – Zebre Rugby Club v Ospreys, and Benetton Rugby v Ulster Rugby.

PRO14 Rugby has activated a live channel of communication with each of the Chief Medical Officers for each participating union who are providing the latest information, advice and requirements from national governments and health authorities in their respective territories.