Newcastle Falcons and Bath awarded four points after Boxing Day matches are cancelled due to Covid-19 – but opponents Leicester Tigers and London Irish receive two points despite positive virus tests
- Newcastle Falcons and Bath have moved up to second and sixth respectively
- Leicester Tigers and London Irish get two points despite positive Covid tests
- Both matches have been recorded as 0-0 despite the four-point allocations
Newcastle Falcons and Bath have been awarded four points, while Leicester and London Irish pick up two apiece following a pair of Boxing Day cancellations in the Gallagher Premiership.
Covid-19 outbreaks among the Tigers and Irish squads rendered the fixtures impossible and Premiership Rugby panel chairman Andy Higginson, chief executive Darren Childs and rugby director Phil Winstanley met to decide on the allocation.
Newcastle have started the season well since promotion and are now four points better off
Both games will be officially recorded as 0-0 scorelines, but with Newcastle and Bath handed victories while their opponents take half the points, which would typically be awarded for a draw. Newcastle head into the new year in second place as a result with 16 points, while Bath move into the top six.
Leicester had returned what they reported as a ‘small number’ of positive tests after their European Challenge Cup win over Bayonne, but contact tracing meant several more players were forced to isolate ahead of the festive fixture and the training ground was shut down as a precaution.
London Irish did the same after returning positives in their December 21 screening, with further individuals later showing symptoms. Their training ground reopened on Monday.
Bath have also risen up the Premiership table after London Irish returned positive Covid tests
A Premiership Rugby statement was released on both verdicts, concluding in each case with the following message.
‘The health and safety of players, staff, management, officials and supporters is our only priority, so the correct decision was taken to call the game off.’