France shifts Top 14 games to cover European rugby gap

Paris (AFP) –


The French league (LNR) announced on Tuesday it has changed the date of another round of Top 14 matches to deal with the postponed European Champions and Challenge Cup weekends.

Fixtures originally scheduled for the weekend of March 19/20/21 will be played on January 22/23/24 after four games put on hold due to Covid-19 cases in club squads were moved to this weekend.

On Monday, European Professional Club Rugby announced its two tournaments were suspended until "February at least" after the French government wrote to the LNR directing the country's clubs not to play in the continental competitions.

La Rochelle are set to host Bayonne on January 22 despite announcing earlier on Tuesday they have closed their training ground after 15 first team and academy players tested positive for coronavirus.

"The choice has been made to bring the last round planned during the Six Nations forward to maximise the possible use of that weekend to hold eventual new postponements," the LNR said.

Leaders Toulouse, ninth-placed Brive and bottom side Agen are the only clubs to have played their full complement of 14 matches while Bayonne have three games to catch up.