France rugby chief convinced Six Nations will run

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The Telegraph this weekend reported that the tournament was in doubt after the French sports ministry imposed a ban on playing cross-border elite sports with clubs from the United Kingdom due to a new strain of coronavirus.

With the European Champions Cup and Challenge Cup reportedly set to be suspended, the French government and Six Nations officials are expected to hold talks.

Yet Laporte does not believe there is any doubt that the competition, which starts in just four weeks' time, can be staged. 

"It's a puzzle, but I think we should not be alarmed for the Six Nations tournament," Laporte said. "The tournament will be played, with a health protocol dictated by the government, and linked to this mutant virus.

"Everything went well in the autumn [when the Autumn Nations Cup was staged], so will the upcoming Six Nations tournament, I'm no more worried than that.

"We have a meeting at the beginning of the week with the ministry of sports, a meeting also with the Six Nations Council.

"But we already talked to each other every day, and today there is no question of considering anything, except that we will play the tournament."

France is due to face Italy in the first game of the Six Nations at Stadio Olimpico on 6 February.