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Coronavirus forces Sunwolves-Brumbies relocation, potential cancellation

Sunwolves fans. (Photo by Toru Hanai/Getty Images)
26th February, 2020
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The Brumbies’ Super Rugby match against the Sunwolves will be relocated from Osaka due to the coronavirus, with SANZAAR looking for an alternative venue.

The Brumbies’ Super Rugby match against the Sunwolves scheduled for early next month in Osaka is set to be relocated due to the coronavirus.

SANZAAR announced on Thursday morning the Japanese government has requested the cancellation of all sporting events for the next two weeks, which takes in the Brumbies’ match on March 6.

SANZAAR is now working to determine if the Hanazono Rugby Stadium match can be relocated and if this isn’t possible, the teams are set to split the competition points.

“SANZAAR will issue further details on the position of this match and any potential further disruptions in the near future,” the governing body said in a statement.

This follows Ireland’s decision to postpone their Six Nations fixture against Italy, which was due to take place in Dublin on March 7.

Due to the outbreak of the virus in northern Italy the IRFU decided to reschedule with thousands of Italian supporters, many from the regions most affected by the outbreak, expected to make the trip. 

The Sunwolves play home games in Japan and Singapore, with the Reds due to play in Tokyo on April 5 with the Waratahs scheduled there on May 8.

The Sunwolves also have back-to-back matches against the Rebels and Waratahs in Australia late next month which could be impacted if there are travel restrictions placed on the Tokyo-based team.

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SANZAAR says it’s in regular contact with National Union Chief Medical Officers (CMOs) who have been monitoring their teams.

There’s presently no identified cases of any players, management or match officials presenting symptoms associated with the virus, including the Sunwolves.

© AAP