Red forces changes to Highlanders pre-season schedule

Highlanders rugby players train at Logan Park, Dunedin, yesterday under the watchful eyes of coaches Clarke Dermody (in cap) and Shane Christie (standing behind Dermody). PHOTO: GERARD O’BRIEN
The Highlanders will play one pre-season game behind closed doors and a second has been cancelled but may be revived at a different venue.

Their annual Farmlands Cup clash with the Crusaders will still be played at Weston, near Oamaru, but will be behind closed doors on February 4 due to the move to the Red light setting.

A week later, their pre-season game against the new Moana Pasifika team in Queenstown has been cancelled.

The second game might be reinstated if arrangements can be made for an alternative location.

“We are devastated to have to shut out the public from Farmlands Cup and cancel our game in Queenstown," Highlanders boss Roger Clark said.

"Our pre-season games are always some of our favourite events where we can get out to our regional areas and we hope to be able to return to these regions in the future."

Highlanders and Crusaders school visits, a family fun day and post-match concert from  Dave Dobbyn and band have all been canned.

The game against Moana Pasifika will not go ahead at the Queenstown Recreation Ground.

The Highlanders are still working through options to potentially play Moana Pasifika on February 11 - presumably at Forsyth Barr Stadium or in Auckland -  but any game would take place behind closed doors.

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