Ireland’s Six Nations match against Italy in Dublin next month has been postponed amid concerns over the coronavirus.
The IRFU confirmed the news after a meeting between their chief executive Phillip Browne and health minister Simon Harris on Wednesday.
The governing body said in a statement: “At the outset we made it clear that the IRFU was supportive of the government’s need to protect public health in relation to the Coronavirus.
“We were then advised, formally, that The National Public Health Emergency team has determined that the series of matches should not proceed, in the interests of Public Health.
“The IRFU is happy to comply with this instruction.
“We will immediately begin to work with our Six Nations partners to look at the possibility of rescheduling the matches and would hope to have an update on this in the coming days.”
Reports suggest that over 2,500 fans were due to travel from Italy to Dublin. The virus has claimed 11 lives in Italy from 322 confirmed cases.