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'There is no scandal' - Toulouse need to suck it up, suggests rival coach

By Ian Cameron
Emmanuel Meafou on the charge /Press Association

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Bordeaux Bègles boss Christophe Urios has suggested that Toulouse need to stop their whining over the EPCR decision to award Cardiff a 0 – 28 walkover win in the Heineken Champions Cup.

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Toulouse say they were able to field a full, competitive team for this weekend’s fixture at the Stade Ernest-Wallon, despite positive tests in camp this week – including one for France scrumhalf Antoine Dupont.

Toulouse went into meltdown on social media over the decision, even going as far as to suggest legal action against the EPCR.

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“The decision to cancel the match and Stade Toulousain’s defeat against Cardiff was disrespectful. EPCR warned Cardiff before us, without taking into account our arguments: A superior Covid-19 protocol, a negative team,” said Toulouse President Didier Lacroix. “We will challenge this decision in court because we are witnessing a total lack of respect. We are playing a competition in which its organizer must justify himself, on many decisions.”

Not everyone in French rugby is in agreement, with Bordeaux Begles boss Urios basically saying that Toulouse needed to suck it up.

“First of all, it’s a sensitive subject for me because it’s my sport, it’s the European Cup and it’s Toulouse that is affected,” Urios wrote for RMC in France. “In Top 14, when you are hit by the Covid, if you are able to present fifteen professional players, including six on the front line, you have to play the match.

“In the Champions Cup, as far as I know, there are no rules. It is at the discretion of a commission that relies in particular on experts from the LNR. So even if Toulouse was able to field a good team, they agreed by the number of players affected during the week that the risk of a cluster was high. So they canceled the game.”

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Urios is standing on firm ground, with Bordeaux Bègles have suffered a similar fate this week. UBB recorded a number of positive test results among their tournament squad and as a consequence, the club was not in a position to fulfil its Heineken Champions Cup, Round 4 fixture against Leicester Tigers.

The game was cancelled and Leicester Tigers – like Cardiff – were awarded the match on a 28-0 win scoreline.

“For me there is no scandal. I don’t think there is. The rule of the European Cup is not to postpone a match.”

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