Sometimes you can’t dodge it
Billy Burns admits that the nature of the current wave of Covid-19 meant his Ulster team felt it was unlikely to escape its path.
Munster and Leinster have seen their recent playlists severely disrupted, with five ties, through the Champions Cup and URC, including their Saint-Etienne derby, canceled or postponed.
Ulster, meanwhile, have had Christmas clashes with Connacht and Leinster called off.
England-born Burns, who has seven caps in Ireland, detailed his experience of the current situation around the team.
“I didn’t go home, I spent it here with my partner and our little girl,” the half told RTÉ Sport. “It was a disruption but it’s happening everywhere right now.
“I didn’t want to risk that with return flights and it was late notice with a few things. It was quiet. I enjoyed that once we found out that these games were on hiatus.
“Obviously it was very disappointing that these games, especially at home, were called off, but that’s the way the sport is. We are now recharged and ready to go.
“It’s just about being responsible, isn’t it. We do what we do, but it’s making smart decisions.
“You don’t want to be the guy who could potentially bring him into the club, and we have a group of guys who know how important this block of the season is.”
Ulster boss Dan McFarland said the province will provide a medical update tomorrow once the latest test results are known.
As it stands, the team is preparing normally for Saturday’s game against Munster at Thomond Park (19:35).
“Nobody goes out and catches Covid on purpose, so we have to try to be responsible,” the 27-year-old added.
“Sometimes you just can’t dodge it and we knew our time was probably going to come at some point and unfortunately it’s Christmas time.
“We’re just trying to do the right thing on a day-to-day basis, all protocols with testing, staying as far away from each other as possible on the spot.
“Keeping our masks on is tough in training but in the gym but that’s all we can do for now.”
Follow Munster v Ulster (Saturday 7:35 p.m.) via our live blog at rte.ie/sport or on the RTÉ News app or watch on RTÉ2 or RTÉ Player. Listen to live radio coverage on RTÉ Radio 1 Extra.