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Barking captain Cohen says they must stick together as all rugby activity suspended

PUBLISHED: 09:34 17 March 2020 | UPDATED: 09:34 17 March 2020

Old Cooperians RFC vs Barking RFC, London 3 Essex Division Rugby Union at the Coopers Company and Coborn School on 14th March 2020

Old Cooperians RFC vs Barking RFC, London 3 Essex Division Rugby Union at the Coopers Company and Coborn School on 14th March 2020

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Barking captain Aaron Cohen insists they must stick together as a community after having had their season suspended because of the coronavirus outbreak.

Old Cooperians RFC vs Barking RFC, London 3 Essex Division Rugby Union at the Coopers Company and Coborn School on 14th March 2020Old Cooperians RFC vs Barking RFC, London 3 Essex Division Rugby Union at the Coopers Company and Coborn School on 14th March 2020

The Rugby Football Union chose to suspend all levels of the game in England until 14 April shortly after the Gallagher Premiership annouced it was halting play for five weeks.

The RFU said all activity, including club training, league and cup matches, and rugby education courses, should be stopped.

“We don’t know what’s going to happen with the league, whether it will be as it stands or whether the leagues will be frozen, but we are prepared as a club for every eventuality and will come back fighting regardless,” Cohen said.

“We’ve all got families, rugby is a beautiful sport as it brings unity to people in the community, and hopefully we can keep that going if people in the community need help.

Old Cooperians RFC vs Barking RFC, London 3 Essex Division Rugby Union at the Coopers Company and Coborn School on 14th March 2020Old Cooperians RFC vs Barking RFC, London 3 Essex Division Rugby Union at the Coopers Company and Coborn School on 14th March 2020

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“We will do whatever we need to do to help our community if we are called upon as a club.

“It needs to be like a World War II mentality. Of course I wasn’t there, but you read and hear things and we all need to stick together now on and off the field. One club, one community.”

Barking did manage to play last weekend and suffered a heavy 87-0 defeat to Old Cooperians with a heavily depleted squad.

“We had a bare 15 turn up, people weren’t committing to playing for whatever reason, some with injury and some with work,” added Cohen.

“We were anticipating it would be cancelled due to Covid-19, so there weren’t many people available, but we put a squad together and they went out there and did their best. They went forward, so I can’t ask for much more from them as it’s a strange feeling that’s going on in the world at the minute let alone rugby.”

Barking knew it would be a tough game as it wasn’t at the forefront of their mind to go and play rugby with everything that is going on, with Cohen adding: “It’s hard to put your finger on the pulse and get psyched up for the game when everyone is worrying what’s going on and how it can affect your day-to-day life.

“The boys went out and played, the result wasn’t great, but we’ve got to move on.”


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