Super League plays on with revised fixtures this weekend after Covid outbreak

Chief executive Robert Elstone admits Super League has been left with “another challenging situation” following the Covid-19 outbreak at Hull FC which has seen two clubs placed on lockdown and forced a rejigged fixture list this weekend.

Super League CEO Robert Elstone (Picture by SimonWilkinson/SWpix.com)

Owners and chief executives from the competition’s dozen clubs met with him on a virtual call this morning for crisis talks after last night’s shock news.

It was revealed five Hull players involved in Sunday’s game against Salford Red Devils had tested positive, in addition to a sixth who was not in their matchday 17.

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Another player in the 17 is also awaiting a retest result after an inconclusive initial result while two members of the East Yorkshire club’s coaching staff also tested positive.

They are all now required to quarantine for 10 days and, though all Salford’s players and staff returned negative results this morning, 11 of their players are now self-isolating for 14 days in line with the Government’s track and trace policy.

The rest of the squad and coaching staff have been put into quanrantine ahead of a further test later this week.

It means their fixture against Catalans at the Totally Wicked Stadium on Saturday has been postponed along with Hull’s game versus Castleford Tigers at the same venue the following night.

In response to these ‘unique circumstances’, the Betfred Super League clubs have collectively agreed to a rearrangement of this weekend’s fixtures, to ensure that four matches will still be played in St Helens this weekend.

On Saturday, Wakefield Trinity will face Catalans (4.15pm) before, as planned, Huddersfield Giants take on Warrington Wolves but at the later time of 6.30pm.

On Sunday, St Helens will now tackle Castleford Tigers (4.15pm) while the Wigan Warriors v Leeds Rhinos game - originally set for Saturday - will round off the weekend at 6.30pm with all four matches shown live on Sky Sports.

Elstone said: “Throughout this crisis our priority has been to ensure we minimise any risk, and the postponement of this weekend’s scheduled fixtures involving Hull FC and Salford underlines that approach.

“It left us with another challenging situation, but it is a credit to the solidarity of the Betfred Super League clubs who agreed to adjust the fixture list at such short notice.

“We also appreciate the ongoing support and flexibility of our broadcast partner, and are pleased that we remain able to present four great Super League fixtures this weekend, all live on Sky Sports.”

The rescheduling of the St Helens versus Castleford fixture leaves a gap in the Round 16 programme, which will now be filled by the St Helens versus Wakefield match which had been due for this weekend.

A new date will be found for Catalans’ home game against Trinity, which had also been due to be played in Round 16.

Those details, along with those regarding the Hull-Castleford and Salford-Catalans matches which had been due this weekend, will be announced when confirmed.

The RFL will make a further announcement as soon as possible regarding the Coral Challenge Cup Sixth Round ties scheduled for Saturday week, August 22 – when Hull are due to play Castleford Tigers.

Saturday 15th

4.15pm – Wakefield Trinity v Catalans Dragons

6.30pm – Huddersfield Giants v Warrington Wolves

Sunday 16th

4.15pm – St Helens v Castleford Tigers

6.30pm – Wigan Warriors v Leeds Rhinos

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