Star France scrumhalf Antoine Dupont has tested positive for Covid-19, the French Rugby Federation (FFR) announced on Friday, making him a doubt for next weekend’s Six Nations home game against Scotland.
Dupont gave a positive result after coach Fabien Galthie was placed in isolation earlier this week before the match with the shots in Paris on February 28.
In-form Dupont, 24, will have to return a negative result during the next test round to meet Gregor Townsend’s men next Sunday.
Eleven other troop members, including Captain Charles Ollivon, were negative.
“After the first PCR tests performed on the morning of Friday, February 19, the first 12 eleven showed negative results,” said FFR.
“Today he (Dupont) is asymptomatic. In line with the Covid-19 protocol, he will remain isolated for the next few days,” it added.
The federation later added that the isolation period will be for seven days.
Toulouse’s Dupont has made an attempt and assisted four others as Galthie’s side leads the Six Nations table after two wins, including last Sunday’s 15-13 victory in Ireland.
Les Bleus are looking at a first title since 2010 and have never claimed the Six Nations Grand Slam in a campaign with trips to Dublin and Twickenham.
“It’s the big blow for France. We imagine there are other players who risk being positive for Covid, so we hope it will not be as significant for France who absolutely need guys like him,” said the former France. -locked Jerome Thion Canal +.
“We know very well that he is France’s playmaker,” he added.
After the 5-10 victory in Italy, where Dupont crossed, New Zealand’s scrum half Aaron Smith said that Dupont was “on a different level” compared to other players around the world.
No cases in Ireland
Ireland head coach Andy Farrell said this week that no positive results were found in his line-up after two test rounds.
Six Nations organizers said they are in contact with FFR.
French Sports Minister Roxana Maracineanu said earlier on Friday that she was happy with the minutes despite threatening to block France’s participation in the competition due to fears of the variant of the virus found in Britain.
Les Bleus players have returned to their homes for a rest weekend with no test matches planned before returning to the team’s training center on Sunday.
If Dupont cannot face Scotland, Galthie Toulon’s Baptiste Serin and Sebastien Bezy will have a replacement option.
Two other coaches, an unnamed as well as the door specialist William Servat have also contracted the disease.
France’s seven-a-side squad withdrew from a tournament in Madrid this weekend after registering cases of the disease.
They had trained with the 15-set the week before the success in the Irish capital.