Rugby France stands against the EPCR, in charge of organizing the Champions Cup and the European Challenge.
This Saturday, the president of the National Rugby League (LNR) René Bouscatel denounced a "distorted and discredited" European Cup after the cancellation of the Toulouse match against Cardiff the day before.
The EPCR had given the match lost 28-0 to Stade Toulousain, defending champion, due to contaminations with Covid-19 in the ranks of the French club, which assured to have a sufficient workforce to play.
I understand the anger of the players and their clubs.
EPCR's decisions are unsportsmanlike and discouraging.
— Bernard Laporte (@BernardLaporte_) January 22, 2022
“I understand the anger of the players and their clubs.
The decisions of the EPCR are unsportsmanlike and discouraging”, tweeted in support Bernard Laporte, president of the French Rugby Federation.
For Bouscatel, also former president of Stade Toulousain, it is "an unfair decision".
The EPCR “decided to cancel a match by not respecting its rules.
This discredits those who made this decision but also the organizer and the competition itself, ”he continued.
In Top 14, the match would have been played
“The rules are that we apply the rules of the country of the host club.
This match being played in France, it is the application of French health regulations.
“If this match had been a Top 14 match, it was being played out,” added the boss of the LNR, in charge of the elite French championship.
According to the French health protocol, a club must have 23 players, including at least six front row and fifteen professionals, so that a match can be held.
Criteria met by the Haut-Garonne club, according to the starting XV unveiled on Friday even before the scheduled time.
The five-time European champion, the most successful club in the history of the competition, therefore no longer has its destiny in its hands until the end of the 4th and last day of the group stage on Sunday.
The EPCR justified its choice to cancel the match by “a significant number of positive results” for Covid-19 in the Toulouse workforce and an “additional risk of contamination having been deemed too great”.
President Didier Lacroix protested against this "injustice" and "disrespect", while his players signed an open letter to denounce this decision.
European Cup: The match against Cardiff canceled and lost at Stade Toulousain, the LNR challenges the decision
Rugby: Turned upside down by the Covid-19 and often disputed, do the European Cups still have a future?
Champions Rugby Cup
Rugby European Cup
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A fault ?