Two more French players have tested positive for Covid-19, bringing to five the total number of players that will be out of action for their Scotland Six Nations fixture this weekend.

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According to the BBC hooker Julien Marchand and centre Arthur Vincent have also now tested positive, although French Rugby have not officially confirmed it on their website or their social media platforms.

Prop Mohammed Haouas, winger Gabin Villiére and star scrumhalf Antoine Dupont have already tested positive, while head coach Fabien Galthie and a member of staff are also in isolation after failing RT-PCR tests.

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Jean-Baptiste Gros and Swan Rebbadj are also now in isolation having been adjudged to be ‘close contacts’ of those infected. Meanwhile, France have named a 31-man squad ahead of the Scotland game in Paris.

French Rugby have implied that the outbreak could have stemmed from a ‘bubble’ training with the France Sevens team, although the facts ‘remain unproven’. France XVs trained with the Sevens, who entered their isolation bubble after testing clear for the virus, on February 10 and 11th.

“Despite all the precautions taken, following an RT-PCR test on Saturday, February 13, a player from France 7 tested positive for Covid-19. He was immediately placed in isolation in accordance with health protocol.

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“In view of the appearance of this positive case, the Medical Committee of the FFR then met to address the question of the qualification or not of certain players of the XV of France in ” case-contact ” of this player of France 7 On medical criteria, it was decided that this scenario did not trigger the designation of the players of the XV of France as a “contact case”.

“In view of the current investigations, the hypothesis of contamination of the XV of France by a player of France 7 is uncertain and is not proven.”

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