Harlequins have been chosen to host the first rugby union match with a crowd since lockdown began this weekend, the success of which is "in England Rugby's best interest" according to the club's CEO.

In a big moment for the sport and its return following a Covi-19 induced hiatus, a reduced crowd of up to 3,500 known season ticket members will watch the Harlequin's match against Bath Rugby on Saturday, September 5.

Subject to a final safety certificate, The Stoop will host what will be Rugby Union’s first event to include fans since lockdown commenced in March.

The Twickenham outfit said they were "incredibly proud as a Club, and for our local community, to have been selected for this pilot event. We are fully aware of the responsibility that comes with its successful delivery.

"We are working closely with the Council to review the extensive measures we have in place, in line with government guidelines, to ensure this event is held to the highest safety standards, for all attendees and our local neighbours."

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Quins' chief executive Laurie Dalrymple said: "It's in their interest that we would try and get this event out the door successfully in a community that sits in the shadow of rugby headquarters.

"Having said that, I think we showed in our original submission to DCMS along with all the other clubs in the Premiership that we have the ability and we have the team and the professionalism, to deliver this event."

The stadium has hosted several Harlequins and London Irish matches over the past few weeks, of course without supporters.

Dalrymple said: "I am delighted to say that these have gone incredibly well and have been an excellent test of our systems and processes to ensure the safety and welfare of everyone attending, whilst delivering the stringent standards set by government guidelines."

The CEO also suggested that the club has already looked into hosting more events if the test is successful.

Safety measures as part of the event include Covid-19 testing for over 1,000 players and club staff, and Harlequins have yet to have a single positive test since weekly testing began on July 6.

All access to the site will be strictly governed via health questionnaires in advance of the event and temperature checks on arriva, and any support who is required to quarantine or shows any symptons will not be permitted entry.

Track and trace will be in place, as will be arrival and departure management, sanitising stations and random temperature checks.

Matchday entertainment will be massively reduced, and social distancing and face masks mandatory.

The RFU also hopes to allow up to 20,000 fans into Twichenham to watch England play Barbarians on 25 October.