Former England captain Chris Robshaw and his Barbarians teammates who broke coronavirus protocols last week will not face a police investigation. Footage emerged on social media over the weekend showing a group from the invitational club engaging in a drinking session at the Running Horse pub in Mayfair.
Robshaw was present along with Sean Maitland, Jackson Wray, Joel Kpoku, Fergus McFadden and Manu Vunipola and the group of Barbarians appeared to break a number of coronavirus regulations.
“The Met will not investigate COVID breaches retrospectively unless they are the most dangerous and flagrant breaches of the regulations. The Met is not investigating this incident,” a statement read.
While police action has been ruled out, there could still be RFU consequences as disrepute charges could be issued if David Barnes, the head of discipline, finds there are cases to answer.
“We are incredibly disappointed to be calling a halt to this fixture, we know how much fans were looking forward to seeing the teams play,” said RFU chief executive Bill Sweeney following the cancellation. “However, our priority is to protect the health and safety of the England squad and the other international teams they will go up against this autumn.
The video that has been circulated on social media is believed to be from one of the two night’s out that forced the cancellation of Sunday’s fixture. https://t.co/LZIbX8qvqc
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) October 24, 2020
“There has been a great deal of effort put into Covid codes of conduct and planning for games, including co-operation with Premiership clubs to release additional players to fulfil the fixture safely, and we are all incredibly frustrated and disappointed that the actions of a number of Barbarians players mean we no longer feel it is safe for the game to go ahead.”
Saracens had provided eleven players to the Barbarians for the match and they issued a statement in the wake of the cancellation. “Saracens is extremely disappointed to learn that some of its players breached the agreed Covid code of conduct protocol whilst on Barbarians duty.
“Although not on club duty whilst with the Barbarians, these players have fallen well short of the high professional standards that are expected at Saracens. Representing the invitational side is a privilege which they have now missed out on due to their poor judgement.
“Management has spoken to the players involved about their responsibilities of representing Saracens away from the club and the impact that these actions have on everyone associated with the club.
“We are thinking particularly of our loyal supporters who have been magnificent in recent months and would have been looking forward to watching an extremely strong Saracens contingent at Twickenham on Sunday. All in question have apologised for their actions. The club will be making no further comment.”
'Coronavirus has really put the kibosh on the nights out and socialising outside the hotel'…
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) October 25, 2020
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