Live updates as Cardiff and Scarlett try to exit South Africa in time

Update from Head of Scarlett

Scarletts boss Simon Modrac spoke this morning about the work that was going on overnight to bring the team home from Durban.

“This is clearly a major concern,” he told BBC Radio Wales.

“Our Rugby General Manager John Daniels and our Team Principal Sarah Davies as well as a number of people on the team have been working through the night figuring out options and have been keeping me updated regularly.

“I hope we can put together a final solution in the next couple of hours.

“First, we need to make sure that the entire team, the staff that is there, is safe. So they’ve gone into a bubble to try and minimize any risk to themselves.

“Secondly, obviously we want to bring them home, and third we would like to bring them home as direct as possible.

“And then, fourth, we’d like to get them home before the 4 a.m. deadline on Sunday. Their safety and repatriation are obviously the top priority, and if we make the last two stages, even better.

Their family at home is clearly concerned. We want the boys and girls who were on the trip to be able to come home and come home.

“From a rugby perspective that obviously gives us more options in terms of how to continue the season over the next two weeks, but certainly, priority number one is about people rather than rugby, but obviously there’s an impact of rugby as well.”

Scarlets CEO Simon Modrac

Modirak added: “I found out about this at 9:06 pm last night and I believe the news broke at around 9 pm.

“So within five or six minutes of uttering the words, we picked them up right away.

“To be fair, we made the decision on the spot on a people basis without any consideration of what any consequences would be from a rugby point of view.

“So even before we had any confirmation from the league of what this would mean in terms of fixtures, we immediately made a decision to start the steps to get the boys and girls that are out there back.

“I’m sure their phones have been ringing all night and their families at home are concerned about their health and well-being, and also, when are they going to meet them, and if they come home, when are they going to do it at home, will they be locked up in a quarantine environment?

“So I’m sure they’ve had sleepless nights and obviously that means thinking about rugby in the short term is secondary.

“It is clearly a dangerous situation. There is an ordeal, but the decision to go home as soon as possible, regardless of the consequences of rugby, was a very easy decision.”

We need to close our travel options, we already have safe options to repatriate people.

“So I think in terms of making sure the guys on the crew that are there are safe, that job is number one and it’s well underway, making sure there’s a bunch of options to get them back to the UK. We have that in place, trying to get options straight and trying to get in before The 4 a.m. curfew on Sunday is what we’re focusing on right now.

“We’re also talking, and we’ll cooperate to the extent possible with Cardiff Rugby. So if there’s something we can do together, obviously we should look at that because they’re in the same boat as us.”

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