UPDATE | Italy vs England could be played behind closed doors - Ruck

UPDATE | Italy vs England could be played behind closed doors

Six Nations bosses held talks in Paris yesterday where it was decided that last two rounds of the competition should be spared further disruption.

However, Italy are now set to ban public events and close all schools and universities in a bid to contain the spread of coronavirus, as the death toll in the country rose to 79.

According to the Mail Online, ITV won’t travel to Rome for Italy v England in the Six Nations as broadcaster tells pundits and staff to stay home amid the coronavirus crisis.

The government is set to close cinemas and theatres and ban public events across the country, according to a draft decree drawn up on Wednesday.

The decree, seen by Reuters, orders “the suspension of events of any nature… that entail the concentration of people and do not allow for a safety distance of at least one metre (yard) to be respected”.

It also tells Italians to avoid hugging and shaking hands in the hope of limiting the spread of coronavirus.

It has been suggested that rugby’s authorities could follow the lead of Italian football authorities who are said to considering playing Serie A matches behind closed doors.

EDITORS PICKS:

Six Nations sources have indicated that matches will only be called off in the event of a governmental directive.

While the Italy against England women’s match is under more threat because it is being staged in Padua in Veneto, the virus has not yet spread to Rome, where the men’s Italy against England game is taking place.

Italy has become the European epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak after seeing an explosion of cases since its first patient tested positive on 19 February.

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