Premiership’s return gives clubs plenty of food for thought

Players now have a way forward but with time running out on the season, questions remain about how it will shape up

Premiership clubs will learn on Thursday when they can start playing again but it is set to be at the end of July, one month later than intended. That leaves them with the choice of playing the rest of the campaign to its conclusion, nine rounds of matches and two play-off weekends, and delaying the start of the following season, or cutting it short and risk having to pay their broadcasters, BT Sport, a rebate.

Players are due to return to training by the end of the week, first in small clusters who all arrive at the training venue separately and maintain the rules on distancing throughout, and later in groups when contact will be allowed. The gap between starting training and playing will be at least six weeks, the time the Pro14 is budgeting for.

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