Italy: Lazio Ducks forfeit semifinal game due to more COVID-19 cases; Milano Seamen advance to final

The Italian Federation of American Football, FIDAF, has announced that the semifinal game between the Milano Seamen and Lazio Ducks that had been postponed 10 days to due COVID-19, has now been cancelled.

Following a mandatory 10 day quarantine period, more cases of the virus have now been discovered on the Ducks team prior to their departure to Milan for tonight’s game.

As a result, Lazio has been forced to forfeit the game and the Milano Seamen will now advance to the Italian championship game July 17 where they will face the Parma Panthers. Parma won their semifinal game against Firenze Guelfi 55-20.

The Ducks and Seamen semifinal game was originally scheduled for July 3 but one of the Lazio players tested positive for the virus in the team hotel in Milan on the morning of the game so the entire team returned to Rome where they immediately went into quarantine for 10 days.

Needless to say, Lazio Ducks head coach Dan Pippin is disappointed:

“It’s not often I am at a loss for words but today I am. As always the health of our players is our main concern. But we have had an unbelievable season. I am very proud of our players and organization. We wish we were able to play but with the circumstances of the day we are not.”

Lazio finished third in the Italian standings after opening the season with two straight losses and qualified for the semifinals on the final day of the regular season.

Milano Seamen head coach Michael Wood, whose team will now face the only team to have beaten them this year in Italy, understands how disappointing this must be.

“Obviously it is disappointing to not play the game. We have been preparing for the last 2 and 1/2 weeks and now the game is cancelled again. I feel bad for the Lazio Organization. This could have happened to any team, especially before the semi-final is heartbreaking.

“As has been said time and again we can only worry about the things that we can control. This was something that is was out of our hands and now we have to more forward and prepare our team for the next challenge. Again I am sorry that the game is off and that the Lazio guys missed out on a great experience, playing a play-off game. But this is just another chapter in this crazy COVID season.”

Italian Bowl 40 will be on Saturday, July 17 at 7p CET Piacenza, Itay at Stadio Garilli.

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