Seven Hawke's Bay representative rugby teams won't be taking the field this season.
Hawke's Bay Rugby Union CEO Jay Campbell confirmed last night his organisation, like every other provincial union, won't be entering development grade, under-19, secondary schoolgirls, under-18, under-16 and sevens men's and women's teams this year.
"While it's partly cost, it's also to do with the unknown, which is affecting all of us," Campbell said, referring to the impacts of the global coronavirus outbreak.
"These are extremely challenging and unparalleled times and Hawke's Bay Rugby along with all provincial unions acknowledge that not fielding these sides is bitterly disappointing, not only for the players who aspire to wear the black and white jersey but the union itself which prides itself on its various representative teams,'' Campbell explained.
"However our major priority is getting our players, be it club, secondary or junior, back out on to the field playing, as quickly as is possible. And it is looking increasingly like being in the window normally set down for representative footy.''
"It is our intention to reinstate rep rugby in 2021 once the full effects of COVID-19 have dissipated and community rugby has returned to normal," Campbell added.