Jackson Hastings and James Gavet 'suspended' for breaching Covid protocols

Huddersfield Giants prop James Gavet and reigning Steve Prescott Man of Steel Jackson Hastings are two of three players stood down for breaching the RFL’s Covid Protocols.

Huddersfield Giants' James Gavet tackled by Wigan Warriors' Willie Isa and Joe Bullock (Chris Mangnall/SWpix.com)

An addition to the Operational Rules has been made in response to the ‘current exceptional situation’ and the duo, along with Warrington Wolves’ Riley Dean, have all transgressed them.

An RFL/Super League statement explained: “The standard punishment, for breaches outside of training and matches, will be a 14-day ban from all Rugby League activity – including training as well as matches – with fines also to be imposed.

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“The 14-day period is consistent with the self-isolation period required following close contact with a person who had tested positive for Covid-19.

“Bans will begin from the date of the transgression, irrespective of when the sanction is imposed.”

Great Britain half-back Hastings made his transgression on August 7 and was suspended from August 8 to 21 according to the statement.

However, during that period, Hastings played in Wigan’s wins over Wakefield Trinity and Leeds Rhinos - as the operational rule was not in place until last week.

Gavet’s was dated as August 13 and he did actually sit out their 19-18 loss against Warrington two days later but will be able to resume against Hull FC on Sunday.

Dean’s transgression was on August 16 so he is not free to train or play until the end of this month.s

A weekly update will be provided from hereon in and Karen Moorhouse, the RFL’s Chief Regulatory Officer, said: “Covid protocols were established in the weeks leading up to the resumption of the Betfred Super League season earlier this month, with an emphasis on player education and collective buy-in, and with clubs encouraged to agree and enforce their own codes of conduct.

“In the main the Protocols have been observed, and we are grateful to the majority of clubs and players and other individuals involved for their responsible and disciplined approach.

“However we are in a situation where breaches of the Protocols by any individuals connected with the game could have serious repercussions for all – either an impact on individual and public health, or in terms of disruption to the rescheduled fixtures list.

“It is therefore important that appropriate sanctions reflecting the reasons for the regulations are imposed. The ability to enforce a 14-day stand-down reflects this."

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James Mitchinson