Challenge Cup final given green light to welcome 1,000 fans

FILE PHOTO: Rugby Union - European Challenge Cup Semi Final - Bristol Bears v Bordeaux-Begles - Ashton Gate Stadium, Bristol, Britain - September 25, 2020 Bristol Bears' Christopher Vui in action Action Images via Reuters/Peter Cziborra

(Reuters) - Friday’s Challenge Cup final between Bristol Bears and Toulon in France will have a limited crowd of 1,000 spectators, the European Professional Club Rugby (EPCR) said on Monday after it received permission from local authorities.

The match is set to be played at the Stade Maurice David in Aix-en-Provence which has a capacity of over 6,400.

“A limited number of fans will be able to attend the Challenge Cup final after authorities in the Bouches-du-Rhone department granted EPCR permission to sell 1,000 tickets for the showpiece match in Aix-en-Provence,” EPCR said in a statement.

“EPCR is committed to ensuring that all matches in its tournaments are staged in line with public health guidelines in order to prioritise the safety of stakeholders.”

However, the top-tier Champions Cup final between Exeter Chiefs and Racing 92 will be played without spectators at Ashton Gate Stadium on Saturday.

The finals of both competitions were originally scheduled to take place in May but were postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Reporting by Manasi Pathak in Chennai; Editing by Christian Radnedge