Feb 25 (Reuters) - Six Nations organisers are in talks with the participating unions amid concerns about the coronavirus outbreak in Italy, The Times has reported.
Seven people have died and over 220 have come down with the flu-like virus, mainly in the northern regions of Lombardy and Veneto, in Europe’s worst outbreak of the illness.
The virus has infected nearly 77,000 people and killed more than 2,500 in China.
Italy are set to host England in their final match of the Six Nations on March 14 but concerns about the fixture have grown after a number of Serie A soccer and Pro 14 rugby games were postponed over the weekend.
“Six Nations is monitoring this situation closely and is in contact with the FIR (Italian federation) and all other unions, as well as relevant local authorities and health organisations,” The Times quoted organisers as saying.
Several media outlets have reported there are also concerns about Italy’s game against Ireland in Dublin on March 7.
“The rugby game is something that needs consideration. This situation is evolving,” Ireland’s minister for health Simon Harris was quoted as saying by The Guardian.
“The weekend’s activities have shown there’s still an awful lot unknown about the coronavirus and about the path it might take. There will be some big decisions in the coming days. Most particularly, I’m thinking of the Ireland-Italy game.” (Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Peter Rutherford )