European Professional Club Rugby suspends 2019/20 Heineken season

Tickets will be valid for new dates

The European Professional Club Rugby (EPCR) has announced that the semi-finals and finals of the Heineken Champions Cup and Challenge Cup have been postponed in view of the coronavirus outbreak.

The finals that were scheduled for May 22- 23 and the semi-finals for May 1-3 have been suspended indefinitely. Rescheduled dates have not been confirmed yet.

In a media statement released on Tuesday morning following a conference call a day before, the EPCR said: "In light of the earlier postponement of its quarter-final matches and with fixtures in Europe's professional league competitions currently suspended due to the public health crisis, EPCR believes it necessary to provide as much clarity as possible to all stakeholders regarding the knockout stages of its tournaments."

Rugby Pixabay

Finals were due to take place in Marseille

The season's finals were supposed to place in Marseille, France. Since the country is locked down and gatherings have been banned in attempt to contain the spread of the virus, the board suspended the season in accordance to government advice.

The EPCR stated that it is working to restructure the matches to complete the 2019/20 Heineken season after receiving advice from the government and the local authority. "EPCR remains committed to completing the 2019/20 Heineken Champions Cup and Challenge Cup season, and it is planned to reschedule the quarter-final and semi-final matches, as well as the Marseille finals, in line with fixtures in the professional league competitions, subject to advice from government and local authorities," the statement added.

Tickets that have already been purchased will be valid for new dates and people who are unable to attend will be entitle to refund.

France has reported more than 20,000 confirmed cases and 862 deaths due to coronavirus so far. Europe has been declared an epicenter of the pandemic by the World Health Organization since Europe reported more cases and deaths than the rest of the world combined.

This article was first published on March 24, 2020
Related topics : Coronavirus