– Above: Rugby players cannot wait to get back in action. Photo: Danie Keet.
South Africa’s franchise teams will return to full-contact training from early next week, following completion of final health checks.
SA Rugby announced that the Vodacom Bulls, Emirates Lions, Cell C Sharks, DHL Stormers, Toyota Cheetahs, Phakisa Pumas and Tafel Lager Griquas can resume contact training as a possible return to competitive action moves closer.
“The teams have been hard at work with non-contact training for the past five weeks, and once a final COVID-19 test has been passed, they will be able to step up a gear next week,” said Jurie Roux, CEO of SA Rugby.
“We are moving in the right direction and I would like to urge all rugby supporters and members of the wider South African rugby family to bear with us as we plan the way forward for the next couple of weeks.”
“With the guidance of Government and working very hard with our various stakeholders, we’ve knuckled down and plotted our return to competitive action, which is getting closer every day. But we’re also very mindful of the pitfalls associated with this and we know things can change overnight.”
Roux said SA Rugby and its various stakeholders were finalising plans for a return to play in line with the best available medical advice in order to ensure player welfare.
“Once we’ve finalized all the relevant plans and we’ve aligned with our broadcast partner, sponsors, franchises and other stakeholders, we’ll confirm the playing schedule,” said Roux.