"ON Monday morning everything was positive, we are playing, by Monday afternoon all bets were off."

It has been one strange week, hasn't it? The rugby world has not been a stranger to the implications the third national lockdown has brought either.

Bradford Salem had a week of training ahead building up to finally returning to contact friendly action in front of a small crowd against Keighley under the new restrictions.

However, those plans were soon kicked into touch when the sudden shutdown suspended the sport until further notice.

"All the players were really looking forward to playing," chairman Neil Klenk said.

"We were supposed to be playing the Bees (Bradford & Bingley) the week after. I suspected the way things were going that would not happen.

"I was hoping to get this Keighley game in just so people have had a game of rugby. I wasn’t very confident of getting in anything after that."

The sport had undertaken a whirlwind December.

Clubs started the month with the surprise news contact training could resume and 15-a-side friendlies were allowed to be played from the 18th.

The RFU had even planned local clusters to go ahead in the new year for those who wanted to be involved.

But now with them being cancelled, friendlies after lockdown seems to be the only option for community rugby before the 2021-22 season commences in September.

Klenk outlined what he would like to see happen.

He added: "It is quite strange because it says they (friendlies) may go into the summer months.

"I’m thinking we would be okay playing local teams in April and May but the prospect of playing on rock hard pitches on June and July on hot days doesn’t really appeal.

"Your pre-season starts in July, so you don’t want to be playing at that time because you are thinking about the season after.

"For me get a little bit of rugby played in May so it gets people back into a routine then look towards 2021-22.

"Bearing in mind when we came out of the last lockdown the return to rugby stages moved quicker than we all expected going from stage A to D instantly. There is nothing to say that will not happen again.

"Perfect scenario is towards the end of February we come out of lockdown back to Stage E, get a couple of training sessions and a friendly in then you are good to go. That is being highly optimistic."

So, what will now keep the Bradford club busy?

"Straight away our coaches (Neil Spence, Dan Scarbrough and Glenn Morrison) have been proactive setting challenges.

"When we were in the first lockdown, the players bought into individual fitness tests. That was challenging for people and kept them interested in a competitive environment.

"At the end of the day, six or seven weeks passes really quickly."