Toulon have claimed that they were forced to back out of their Heineken Champions Cup clash and say they are filled with ‘bitterness’ over the awarding of a 28 – 0 victory to the Scarlets by the EPCR.

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Toulon were adjudged to have failed to fulfil their fixture at Scarlets on Friday night, the match getting called off shortly before kick-off after the French squad opted not to travel to Parc Y Scarlets.

The club say they did so over concerns over their players covid safety.

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But Toulon, are not happy, and claim their hand was forced in a statement issued by the French club: “Without answers given to these questions, the Rugby Club Toulonnais considers that the position taken by the EPCR is irregular and is studying all possibilities of appeal.”

“Rugby Club Toulonnais recalls that it had travelled with a very competitive team and a lot of ambitions in Wales. However, in order to preserve the health security of the players, the staff and their entourage, the decision not to participate in this meeting was necessary.

“The disappointment and the bitterness at not being able to play are great. The EPCR did not referee, during the whole week preceding the match, the health situation linked to this meeting with the two clubs and did so only a few hours before the match, forcing us to a heartbreaking decision.

“The RCT, through its president, has assumed its responsibilities. We would have liked the European rugby authorities to do the same …

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“Despite everything, the RCT wishes a speedy recovery to the Scarlets player(s) affected by the epidemic.”

This is Toulon’s version of the events:

Thursday 17th December early afternoon: The RCT team flies to Wales to face the Scarlets on Friday 18th December.

Thursday, December 17, at the end of the evening: The RCT learns from the press that the La Rochelle v Bath match is cancelled due to 12 players in contact cases in the English workforce. These players having been in contact with a Scarlets player who tested positive for Covid-19 during the first round of the Champions Cup on Saturday, December 12.

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Friday, November 18, at 9 a.m: The RCT, through its doctor and its team manager, contacts the director of operations of the EPCR who then speaks of a complex situation with one positive case for Covid-19 and 16 contact cases in the Scarlets squad.

Friday, December 18: The RCT contacts the EPCR to ensure that the protocols prescribed by the public authorities and the EPCR have been respected.

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