Rhys Patchell: Wales and Scarlets fly-half says sport does not matter at this time – BBC South East Wales

Rhys Patchell has won 19 caps for Wales since his debut in 2013

Fly-half Rhys Patchell says there are more important things in life after Wales’ summer tour to Japan and New Zealand was postponed.

The international in Japan on 27 June and two Tests against New Zealand in July have been postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Patchell believes rugby should continue to take a back seat.

“There are more important things at the moment, sport does not really matter,” said Patchell.

The tour could be delayed until later in the year although no alternative 2020 international programme has been confirmed.

“The welcome in Japan for the World Cup last year was amazing and they did a great job hosting,” said Patchell, who celebrated his 27th birthday on Sunday, 17 May.

“New Zealand is amazing, the people are welcoming the country is beautiful.

“It would have been great to be part of that tour and maybe play, but that’s how it goes. It might be a quiet summer for Welsh players.”

There are also no concrete plans for regional rugby to return with rugby suspended since the beginning of March.

Regional players are currently on furlough with no sign of any immediate return to training with the current lockdown restrictions.

“We haven’t really spoken about it (returning to rugby) – because at the moment it’s so far away,” Patchell told Dewi Llwyd on Radio Cymru.

“At the moment the guys are switching off from rugby and concentrating on being dads or husbands.

“We don’t have much time with family during the season. Once we have a bit more of an idea what the plan is, those conversations will happen.”

Patchell will be hoping he can prove his fitness after being sidelined since 1 November with a shoulder injury picked up while playing against New Zealand in Wales’ 2019 World Cup bronze medal match defeat.

“The Scarlets had a game out in Connacht before this lockdown and the plan was that I was fit for that game,” said Patchell.

“As it happens the injury was a six-month injury, but for some reason rugby players tend to be back after 12 weeks.

“So I’ve actually had the full recovery time and the shoulder feels fit.”

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