Six Nations confirm dates and venues for suspended games

The dates of the rescheduled Six Nations have been confirmed with a triple-header of games set to take place on Saturday, October 31.

Six Nations organisers have also confirmed the venues and kick-off times for some of the remaining four fixtures.

The 2020 Six Nations Championship, which was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic, will restart on Saturday, October 24 when Ireland face Italy at the Aviva Stadium, with a kick-off time to be confirmed.

The remaining fixtures will then be played the following week with a triple-header of games taking place across the day.

First up will be the meeting of Wales and Scotland at 2.15pm, although a venue has not been confirmed.

Wales could be required to play this home fixture at an alternative venue, possibly in London, as the WRU are unsure if the Principlaity Stadium will be available for use.

That game will be followed by England’s trip to face Italy at the Stadio Olimpico (KO 4.45pm), before the day’s action concludes with the meeting of France and Ireland at the Stade de France (KO 8pm).

“In rescheduling these matches, the health and safety of players, associated staff and supporters has been at the forefront of our thinking,” read a Six Nations statement.

“We remain in close contact with all relevant authorities across the respective jurisdictions to ensure these matches take place in a safe environment and we will announce further details of health and safety protocols and guidance on spectator attendance in due course.”

The statement also addressed the anticipated announcement of a new eight-team tournament, which is set to take the place of the existing autumn Test schedule this year.

“In recent weeks, Six Nations has also been progressing contingency plans for an alternative tournament format in place of the Autumn Internationals for 2020, primarily driven by travel restrictions not allowing many international teams to play the scheduled matches,” the statement read.

“This tournament will be a unique eight-team competition, involving the Six Nations unions and two other international teams.

“We are currently finalising match schedules, operational details including venues as well as commercial arrangements. Further announcements relating to this competition are expected to be made later this month.

Ben Morel, CEO Six Nations commented, “We are absolutely thrilled to make this announcement today.

“Whilst the past few months have been extremely challenging, we have always remained hopeful of concluding this year’s tournament and we are really looking forward to the final games in the Men’s and Women’s Championships.

“There is still so much to play for, and we are hugely excited for what lies ahead.”

“Public health remains the number one priority and while we must continue to be vigilant and cognisant of the dynamic and fast changing external environment, we are nonetheless extremely pleased to be moving in the right direction.”

The statement also outlines plans for the suspended Women’s Six Nations fixtures, while confirming that the remaining u20 Six Nations games will not be completed due to ‘season scheduling constraints’, meaning no winner will be declared.