Premiership and Championship rugby clubs have been given the green light to return to small group training in a “performance environment”.

This is subject to social distancing, daily screening, cleaning and hygiene requirements. Clubs will also need to provide a written declaration to Premiership Rugby and the RFU that they have met a number of key criteria.

These include daily medical screenings for players and staff, the appointment of a Covid-19 Manager and Covid-19 Medical Lead, guidance for cleaning and hygiene standards at training grounds, and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) when required.

Chris Booy, Professional Game Board Chair, said: “I can confirm that the Professional Game Board which incorporates representatives of the Rugby Football Union (RFU) Premiership Rugby, Rugby Players Association (RPA) and Championship Clubs has given provisional authorisation for Premiership and Championship Rugby clubs to move to Stage 1: Elite Sport Return to Training Guidance.

“The clubs will need to satisfy a number of requirements to start Stage 1 as we continue the huge amount of work being undertaken to enable a safe return to training.

“The welfare of the players, management and staff is our only priority, and we look forward to the season resuming when it is safe to do so.”

No timescale has been set for clubs to move to Stage 2 or Stage 3 which involves the safe return of Gallagher Premiership Rugby.

 

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