All Blacks are canceling games against Australia and South Africa due to Covid-19 travel restrictions
New Zealand is currently subject to lockdown restrictions until at least 11:59 p.m. local time on Tuesday after an outbreak of the highly transmissible Delta variant of the coronavirus was detected in the country. Authorities have since uncovered another 30 active cases, including 11 locally transmitted infections that were announced on Friday. The team was scheduled to face the Wallabies – the Australian men’s rugby team – for the third Bledisloe Cup Test this Saturday in Perth, Australia game – a series between the two nations – and the nation’s second game of rugby championship, one Test series that will be held between New Zealand, Australia, South Africa and Argentina. However, “given the current uncertainty about the rugby championship schedule,” the team will not travel, according to a New Zealand Rugby (NZR) statement.
Mark Robinson, CEO of NZR, said the decision was made because the team’s return home could not be ensured.
“Once the team leaves our shores, they cannot return from their Northern Tour until November 23rd.
“We remain 100 percent committed to participating in the entire Fortinet Rugby Championship in 2021 and are working closely with SANZAAR to review a number of options to postpone these important games.”
In addition, the All Blacks were due to play South Africa on Saturday 25 September at Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin and on Saturday 2 October at Eden Park in Auckland.
New Zealand’s women’s rugby team, the Black Ferns, was due to come out on Sunday the 26th.
But after government advice that the 2019 World Cup winners and the Wallaroos cannot enter New Zealand to play the Games “due to COVID-19 travel restrictions”, the Games were canceled.
Robinson said every effort had been made to keep the tests in New Zealand.
“We share the disappointment of our fans, players and other stakeholders, especially those in Dunedin where the sold out 100th Test between the All Blacks and South Africa became a very special occasion,” he said.
“However, after speaking with the government, it is clear that the Covid-19 travel restrictions meant there was no way to get the South African and Wallaroos squads to New Zealand and we understand the importance of health and safety Putting the New Zealander first. “
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Andy Marinos, CEO of Rugby Australia, criticized the lack of communication among his New Zealand colleagues and said he was “bloody mad”.
“I think it’s disappointing the way it’s communicated. Our boys all found out on social media,” he told reporters.
“I thought New Zealand rugby didn’t even have the respect to consult RA on their decision so this is very disappointing.”