WARRIORS chiefs have welcomed Premiership Rugby’s decision to cancel tonight’s Gallagher Premiership match against Sale Sharks at the AJ Bell Stadium.
The Sixways side were handed 20-0 win and five points as a result of the decision to leave Warriors ninth in the final Premiership league table, their highest finish for four years.
Premiership Rugby’s decision follows a farcical four days which saw Warriors name their team for Sunday’s original clash only for the game to be postponed under this evening some two hours later.
All Sale Sharks players and staff members in the testing pool were tested for COVID-19 as part of the Premiership Rugby weekly programme yesterday (Tuesday)
The results revealed an additional six players and two staff from Sale Sharks had tested positive for a COVID-19 bringing the total number of positive tests at the club to 27.
Owing to the results, Premiership Rugby, in consultation with Public Health England and Warriors, decided the game would not go ahead.
“This is the right outcome for the safety of all players, staff and officials involved although we do have sympathy for Sale that such an important match has been decided in this way,” a Warriors statement read.
“Sadly, we are playing rugby in the middle of a pandemic and in unprecedented circumstances. While it is desirable to retain the integrity of all competitions as much as possible, ultimately the health and safety of all involved has to be the absolute priority.
“We would like to thank Sale and Premiership Rugby for being understanding of our concerns and working closely with us to ensure the safety of everyone concerned.
“Now we know that our own players are not at any increased risk, our thoughts are with those at Sale and Northampton Saints who have tested positive for COVID-19. We wish them all a speedy recovery and hope that no further cases are reported.
“Hopefully the remainder of the season can be completed safely and securely to provide a fitting finale on the pitch,” the statement read.