Northampton’s Heineken Champions Cup tie at Racing 92 on Sunday has been cancelled because of several positive Covid-19 tests in the Saints camp.
Tournament organisers European Professional Club Rugby (EPCR) said Racing 92 had been awarded the match by a 28-0 scoreline with five match points.
“EPCR has been informed by Northampton Saints that they have recorded a number of positive test results for Covid-19 among their tournament squad and as a consequence, the club is not in a position to fulfil its Heineken Champions Cup, Round 4 match against Racing 92 scheduled for tomorrow (Sunday, January 23),” read a statement.
Our Champions Cup fixture against Racing 92 in Paris, scheduled for Sunday 23 January, has been cancelled ❌
— Northampton Saints 😇 (@SaintsRugby) January 22, 2022
“The Pool A fixture at Paris La Defense Arena is therefore regrettably cancelled with Racing 92 awarded the match on a 28-0, five match points basis, in accordance with the tournament rules.
“EPCR would like to acknowledge the efforts of both clubs to fulfil the fixture, and would also like to reiterate that awarding the match to Racing 92 is a tournament management measure with the objective of ensuring that all fixtures in the 2021-22 Heineken Champions Cup are accounted for, and not a sanction.”
📢𝗥𝟵𝟮 𝘃 𝗡𝗼𝗿𝘁𝗵𝗮𝗺𝗽𝘁𝗼𝗻 - 𝗠𝗔𝗧𝗖𝗛 𝗔𝗡𝗡𝗨𝗟𝗘
Décision de l'EPCR concernant notre match à @ParisLaDefArena ➡️ https://t.co/6r4WaOF0yv
Dear @SaintsRugby we wish a quick recovery to those affected, good luck 💪 pic.twitter.com/z8tq7o3MQx
— Racing 92 (@racing92) January 22, 2022
The cancellation ends winless Northampton’s hopes of making the Champions Cup round of 16 and all but secures Racing finishing top of Group A.
The Saints could still qualify for the knockout stage of the European Challenge Cup, with clubs finishing between eighth and 11th dropping into the second-tier competition.
On Friday, the Champions Cup ties between Leicester and Bordeaux-Begles and Toulouse and Cardiff were cancelled because of coronavirus, as was Newcastle’s Challenge Cup clash against Toulon.