Montpellier v Leinster cancelled with French side awarded 28-0 win

Leinster’s Heineken Champions Cup match against Montpellier at the GGL stadium tomorrow night (8.0) has been cancelled. Both clubs named teams this morning but circumstances changed during the day and the game has now been called off. The Irish province had postponed flying to France until tomorrow morning.

A statement from EPCR confirmed that Montpellier would be awarded a 28-0 win and the five points.

The statement read: “Following a meeting of an independent Match Risk Assessment Committee, EPCR has been advised that the Heineken Champions Cup, Round 2 fixture between Montpellier Hérault Rugby and Leinster Rugby scheduled for tomorrow (Friday, 17 December) at the GGL Stadium cannot go ahead safely.

“The contest in Pool A is therefore cancelled with Montpellier Hérault Rugby awarded the match on a 28-0, five match points basis, in accordance with the Tournament Rules.

“The Match Risk Assessment Committee, made up of medical doctors from EPCR’s Medical Advisory Group as well as an independent medical specialist with experience in virology, advised EPCR of its concerns following new positive Covid-19 test results from the Leinster Rugby playing squad, and regrettably the decision was made to cancel the match.

“EPCR would like to acknowledge the efforts by both clubs to fulfil the fixture, and would also like to emphasise that awarding the match to Montpellier 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.”

Shortly after the decision was announced, Leinster released a statement expressing their disappointment at the decision and saying that they complied with all protocols.

“Leinster Rugby team management has expressed its disappointment with EPCR over the decision to award a 28-0 win in Montpellier’s favour,” the statement read.

“The Leinster Rugby squad and staff have had five rounds of Antigen tests and four rounds of PCR tests in the last six days and a group of players and staff, who have all come through each stage of those tests, had been selected to represent the club in France tomorrow evening and arrangements made accordingly.

“As a result of these test results and the measures implemented by Leinster Rugby, a letter was issued today, Thursday, 16th December 2021, to Leinster Rugby from Public Health Ireland confirming that the group could travel to France for the game.

“At all times Leinster Rugby has complied with all measures and protocols required of the club by EPCR, and by the HSE, and will continue to do so.

“While we are disappointed with the outcome of today’s decision by EPCR, our focus now is the health and well-being of all our players and staff and we would like to put on record, as a club, our sincere thanks to Prof. John Ryan and all the medical team supporting those players and staff.”

More to follow…

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