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Leinster announce plans for return of fans as early as next month

Leinster

Leinster have announced that they have submitted plans to the Irish government to use rapid antigen testing to allow supporters to attend their home matches.

The last time supporters attended a Leinster home match was in February 2020, when the Blues played Glasgow Warriors at the RDS Arena.

However, the Pro14 champions are hoping that up to 2,000 fans may be allowed to attend a Rainbow Cup match as early as next month as a proof of concept test event.

The antigen tests, which have been approved by the EU, would be performed on all spectators planning on attending the match on site at the RDS Arena, and would complement existing protocols such as social distancing.

A maximum of 2,000 fans would be allowed in at the 18,500 capacity stadium under the plans submitted to the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport & Media.

Leinster

‘We are confident that we have the infrastructure’

Leinster CEO Mick Dawson said that the province were confident that they could safely reintroduce spectators to live games, thanks to the new rapid antigen tests.

“This is an expertly researched project, which has been subject to robust scrutiny at every level, and we see it as a key contribution to the Government’s efforts to return our country to some form of normality,” Dawson said.

“This initiative has the potential to be used as a blueprint by all sporting, cultural and community organisations for the safe return of limited crowds to their events.

“Leinster Rugby has been working with key stakeholders for a number of months to finalise plans for a phased re-opening of the RDS Arena.

“We are confident that we have the infrastructure in place to ensure a safe and efficient trial and Martin Murphy, Chair of the combined working party, has written to the Department of Sport accordingly, outlining our readiness for such a trial and indeed, as I have stated earlier, our willingness that any data and lessons from such a trial be shared with relevant authorities and with other National Governing Bodies.”

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