THE Welsh Rugby Union has declared that there will be no league rugby in 2020/21 because of the coronavirus pandemic.

The governing body cancelled last season after it was initially suspended in March and the game is yet to return fully.

All community rugby will be suspended from December 28 after the Welsh Government announced the country will go into tier four measures.

The WRU are still hopeful of some form of competitive rugby in 2020/21 – and have extended the season to May – but there will be no promotion or relegation with clubs remaining in their 2019/20 divisions.

Premiership and Championship clubs will be the first to return with “an element of contact rugby and some form of competition with modified laws and regulations”.

Those clubs will be given six weeks of training ahead of the return while all other levels of the game will be able to resume touch rugby when Welsh Government guidelines allow, with notice given ahead of their return to contact.

WRU community director Geraint John said: “We are working hard with all partners to bring some form of competitive community rugby back before the end of the season and we feel this plan reflects that.

“We are acutely aware how much people are missing rugby. We also know that our clubs, who have been fantastic throughout this public health crisis, continue to face challenges.

“We have heard loud and clear their concerns about people potentially leaving the game during this enforced change to all our rugby lives.

“However, we need to bring the game back safely and sustainably when Welsh Government guidelines allow.

“These new measures have been submitted by our Community Game Board and have the approval of the National Sporting Group and the full WRU Board.

“We want to provide clarity to our clubs and the people who make up our game in Wales. Whilst we acknowledge this not a return to normal, it signposts a route back to competitive rugby.”