La European Cup to the dregs… Under the threat of Covid-19, continental competition seems to be a toss-up. Just like the decisions taken by the EPCR according to the reports. Started on the tone of farce, this Champions Cup 2021-2022 takes a further step. It is clearly turning into a fiasco. Affected by the epidemic, Stade Toulousain, defending champion, and Union Bordeaux-Bègles, semi-finalist of…
La European Cup to the dregs… Under the threat of Covid-19, continental competition seems to be a toss-up. Just like the decisions taken by the EPCR according to the reports. Started on the tone of farce, this Champions Cup 2021-2022 takes a further step. It is clearly turning into a fiasco. Affected by the epidemic, Stade Toulousain, defending champion, and Union Bordeaux-Bègles, semi-finalists of the last edition, were forced to forfeit (28-0) for their last respective group matches scheduled for this Saturday. against Cardiff and Leicester. Consequence: the Rouge et Noir, who have only played two games, have their fingers crossed for qualification, while the Girondins, who have played as many, are already in 8are of final.
The fate of Toulouse in this European Cup now depends on the results of Castres, Wasps and Stade Français. So, in Haute-Garonne, the decision to forfeit against Cardiff does not pass at all. Especially since the Toulouse people make sure to have informed the EPCR that they were able to field a team despite the Covid cases of which Antoine Dupont is a part. “It’s a real injustice”, launched President Didier Lacroix, during an improvised press conference as soon as the cancellation was announced. “We have the merit of making sure to teach the kids to respect the rules and the referee. I don’t know at what level we have to restore the balance but we can’t hide behind the Covid. In the process, the LNR came to support via a press release, denouncing a “scandalous and unfounded decision”, and does not intend to stop there.
Qualification in 2 matches
The Toulouse package (7 points) led to the qualification of UBB (8 points) which, despite its package at Leicester, did not even have to wait for the result of Castres at Harlequins this Friday. The misfortune of some being the happiness of others, the Girondin club kept a low profile and did not wish to express itself following its qualification on the green carpet.
“When the starting rules are not well defined, it is truncated, admitted manager Christophe Urios, after the victory against the Scarlets. The first ones will not be proven the real first ones and the 8are finals probably won’t be real 8sare of finals. But that doesn’t mean we don’t have ambition. »
Most of the Girondin players were ready to set up this Friday morning in Moga, before taking the plane at 2 p.m., but the whole group was called back to the locker room. Indeed, the tests carried out a few minutes earlier revealed several positive cases for Covid-19 in the Girondin ranks. The UBB, which did not wish to communicate on the number of players affected, immediately informed the EPCR of the situation and the European body decided to cancel the match.
During this group stage, Bordeaux-Bègles will therefore only have played two games against Leicester (13-16 defeat, 1D day) and against the Scarlets (bonus victory 45-10, 3and daytime). Postponed due to travel restrictions between France and Great Britain, the trip to the Scarlets (2and day) had been sold by a draw by the EPCR (0-0), before the UBB was forfeited for its trip to Leicester (28-0, 4and daytime).
Qualification in hand, the leader of the Top 14 will not complain about this weekend of forced rest, before attacking a rather thick block in the championship during the international period (Castres, Clermont, Racing 92, Toulouse, Pau).