Wasps cleared to play in Gallagher Premiership final
No further positive tests for Covid-19 among Wasps players or staff; club will face Exeter Chiefs in Saturday's Twickenham showdown
Last Updated: 21/10/20 3:05pm
Wasps have been cleared to play in Saturday's Gallagher Premiership final after reporting no further positive results in the latest round of coronavirus testing.
The Coventry-based side had previously returned 11 positive tests from players and staff from the two previous rounds of testing, leaving their participation in the showpiece Twickenham final in doubt.
But no further players or staff have tested positive in the latest round of testing. A test from one of the coaching staff, who tested negative on Saturday, was damaged in transit and that person will be working socially distanced until their result is confirmed.
Stephen Vaughan, Wasps Group CEO, said: "I would like to place on record my sincere thanks to Premiership Rugby, the RFU, Public Health England and Public Health Warwickshire for their clarity and assistance throughout this whole process.
"As a club, we are delighted that we can now take our rightful place in this Saturday's Premiership Rugby Final. To all of our fans and well-wishers, thank you for your many messages of support, this final is for you!
"The club's Covid-19 contact tracing, measures and protocols, which remain rigorous, will continue to be adhered to."
Bristol Bears - who finished third at the end of the regular season but were beaten 47-24 by Wasps in their play-off semi-final - had been placed on standby to face Exeter Chiefs but will now be able to resume their European Challenge Cup celebrations.
Baxter: Good news Wasps can play
Exeter will become only the fourth English club to complete a domestic and European trophy double if they beat Wasps, and their rugby director Rob Baxter is delighted the game will progress as planned.
"It's obviously good news," Baxter said. "We ourselves had the all-clear as well this morning, completely negative right across the board, which is fantastic news for us.
"It was great to have a message from (Wasps head coach) Lee (Blackett) this morning saying their testing had gone well. And now we can confirm and get on with things.
"Wasps will deem themselves very unlucky. I think they are one of the teams that have hardly picked up anything at all right the way through, and then right at the business-end of the season they've had one little outbreak.
"I have every confidence that they are doing everything correctly, and I have got every confidence that this has been dealt with and everyone who will now be on the pitch in the final, both from Exeter and from Wasps, will be Covid-free and there won't be any danger to anybody.
"People probably don't realise that even one failed test can set a chain of events going that can be quite difficult to deal with, and it takes quite a while to get on top of that.
"There is a nerve-wracking experience you go through each week. We have a little cheer in the team room when we announce to the players that we have got through it again. You mark it off every week.
"We've all had to get on with it, and I think on the whole, we have dealt with it extremely well."