WORCESTER Warriors go into this weekend’s basement battle with Gloucester having been awarded maximum points from their cancelled league clash with Newcastle Falcons.
Premiership Rugby confirmed Warriors had been awarded four match points and Newcastle Falcons two after the cancellation of their Gallagher Premiership Rugby fixture which was due to be played at Sixways on Saturday.
The award is the second time Warriors have been handed the points following a Covid-19 cancellation this season and two of the club’s three league wins have come via this route.
In light of these additional positive tests following on from those returned in the previous week, the Professional Rugby Testing Oversight Group and Public Health England were of the opinion these tests amount to an outbreak and that further transmission could not be ruled out.
Therefore, all rugby activity for the Newcastle Falcons was suspended for ten days from the last contact between the squad until further testing could be carried out on Monday, February 22.
A Premiership Rugby spokesperson said: “The health and safety of players, staff, management and officials is our only priority, so first and foremost we’d like to wish those at the Falcons who tested positive a swift and safe recovery.
“But, following consultation with local Public Health England officials and the Professional Rugby Testing Oversight Group, the correct decision was taken to call the game off as the positive these tests amount to an outbreak and that further transmission could not be ruled out.
“Worcester Warriors have been awarded the win and four league points. Newcastle Falcons shall be deemed to have lost the match but awarded two league points. The match score shall be recorded as 0-0.”
Warriors pair Duncan Weir and Sam Lewis will be both be sidelined for around 12 weeks with shoulder injuries that will require surgery.
Both sustained the injuries against Leicester Tigers two weeks ago, with Scotland international fly-half Weir suffering a grade three tear in his acromioclavicular joint and openside flanker Lewis a grade four tear in his same joint.
Warriors hope fly-half Billy Searle will return to action within two to three weeks having missed the Gallagher Premiership matches against Leicester and Wasps because of a gashed thigh muscle which he sustained against Exeter Chiefs three weeks ago.
Hooker Matt Moulds is on course for a return to action in the middle of next month after almost a year out with a foot injury.
Moulds underwent surgery to repair and stabilise an existing injury last summer but further complications have delayed his comeback.
Francois Hougaard and Anton Bresler are also back in full training ahead of Saturday’s M5 derby (kick off 3.15pm).