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CFL TALKS TOUGH: Teams could forfeit games, lose pay if hit by COVID-19 outbreak

“Our goal is to ensure we have zero game cancellations due to issues caused by an outbreak of COVID-19 within our football operations."

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The CFL has followed the NFL in introducing a tough policy that will penalize any team left short of players because of COVID-19 issues.

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It also says if there is a cancelled game, the players on a team that falls below an 85 per cent vaccination threshold will not be paid for the game.

“Our goal is to ensure we have zero game cancellations due to issues caused by an outbreak of COVID-19 within our football operations,” said CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie in a statement Tuesday. “While this policy spells out what will happen if cancellations do occur, its main purpose is to encourage all of our players to get fully vaccinated in order to minimize the risk to our season and, most importantly, their health and safety.”

According to the policy, if a game cannot be played as scheduled because of COVID-19 issues, and it cannot be rescheduled: And one club is suffering from the COVID-19 issues, that club will forfeit the game and be assigned a loss while its opponent will be credited with a win by a score of 1-0. And both clubs are suffering from the COVID-19 issues, then both clubs will forfeit the game and be assigned a loss.

As of last Friday, 79 per cent of CFL players are fully or partially vaccinated. Three CFL teams have more than 85 per cent of their players vaccinated. The other six teams have vaccination rates ranging from 67 per cent to 81 per cent.

The league also announced its latest COVID-19 testing results: From July 15 to the end of training camp last Friday, the league administered approximately 6,000 COVID-19 tests to its Tier 1 personnel, which included players, coaches and support staff. Those tests resulted in zero individuals returning a positive test result for COVID-19.

The league’s cancellation policy says a game will be cancelled if any of the following conditions are met. The playing of the game is precluded by a decision by a government health authority. A team does not have 36 players to dress for the game. A team does not have an individual available to coach the offence and another individual to coach the defence. A team does not have a certified athletic therapist and sports medicine physician available for the game.

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