Photo: Barbarian FC/Twitter

Barbarians match against Samoa cancelled due to COVID-19 cases

The UK Barbarians match against Samoa which had been set to take place at Twickenham on Saturday has been cancelled.


Photo: Barbarian FC/Twitter

The Barbarians match against Samoa which had been set to take place at Twickenham on Saturday has been cancelled.

Multiple players tested positive for COVID-19 in the build-up and the match has been officially called off.

Barbarians match against Samoa cancelled 

“Please note, today’s match between Barbarians men and Samoa has unfortunately been cancelled due to confirmed positive Covid cases,” the Baa Baas tweeted.

Springbok hooker Malcolm Marx had been set to start the match against Samoa as the sole representative from the world champions in the XV, while Steven Kitshoff and Duane Vermeulen had places on the bench.

Springbok women in the spotlight

As a result of the cancellation, the Barbarians Women‘s match against the Springboks will make UK television history.

Head Coach Jo Yapp said: “It’s great to have everyone in camp and we’re looking forward to the week. We know the Springboks will be a tough test so our preparation is all about getting to know each other, blending personalities and playing styles and ensuring every player has the chance to express themselves.  

“A Barbarians camp is a unique experience and, while many of the squad know each other as opposition, this week we will really unite as one team.”

Very few of the Springbok women will be so acutely aware of the importance of grabbing the opportunity than 30-year-old prop Asithandile Ntoyanto from the remote Nqamakwe Eagles club in the Border region.

As one of only four players in the current touring squad to have played at the 2014 Rugby World Cup in France, Ntoyanto knows pretty well what the global showpiece entails, but unlike Nolusindiso Booi, Zenay Jordaan or Tayla Kinsey, her career was almost over before it started.

“Asi”, as she is known amongst her team mates, returned home injured from France, and all but the setbacks sent her reeling off the rugby radar completely.

“I did not properly recover and paid the price, as it set me back a long time,” she admits.

“I became scared to play my game, I did not want to give everything, fearing that I could get injured again. Only once I completed a proper rehab programme, I got better and could play at a decent level again.”