(Reuters) – Premiership Rugby said on Friday it had recorded a season-high of 54 cases of COVID-19 among players and staff in the past week — nearly double the number of cases in the first 14 weeks combined.

More than 3,300 COVID-19 tests were undertaken between Dec. 10-16, with 47 players and seven members of staff from nine different clubs testing positive.

The first 14 weeks of testing in the Premiership had yielded only 29 positive tests between Sept. 3 to Dec. 9.

Britain reported a new high of 93,045 COVID-19 infections on Friday, fuelled by the rapid spread of the Omicron variant of the virus.

“Those who do test positive and their close contacts are isolated and assessed in line with the PHE-agreed guidelines,” Premiership Rugby said in a statement.

Earlier on Friday, Champions Cup and Challenge Cup fixtures between French and UK clubs scheduled for this weekend were postponed in light of new COVID-19 travel curbs introduced by the French government.

The Premier League, England’s top flight soccer league, found a record 42 cases of COVID-19 among players and staff earlier this week.

(Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge)

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