Thursday, 5 March 2020

Parisse's plans scuppered by Covid-19

Sergio Parisse must be wondering what he has done to offend the Rugby Gods following news that Italy's Six Nations game against England on 14 March in Rome has been postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Faced with option of playing the game behind closed doors at the Stadio Olimpico or postponing, with commercial considerations to the fore it looks as if the Italian Rugby Federation has chosen the latter option.

Parisse, you may recall, had planned to retire following the World Cup in Japan, but was denied a swansong appearance when Italy's final pool match against New Zealand was cancelled in wake of Typhoon Hagibis.

And so plans changed, with the legendary number 8 instead being granted the opportunity to bow out at the end of the 2020 Six Nations with a cameo performance against England in Rome.

But now, with Italy's final two games of the Six Nations postponed and with organisers having no idea when these fixtures might be played, Parisse's chance appears to have come and gone owing to another Force Majeure.

Which only goes to prove: the best-laid plans of mice and men often go awry...

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