Champions Cup final: Finn Russell plotting downfall of friendly rival Stuart Hogg as Racing 92 and Exeter collide

“Virimi isn’t bad is he? He’s a good guy off the field, he gets on with everyone. He speaks French and English, which helps me,” Russell said.

“If I can’t think of what I’m trying to say he’ll translate and maybe get my point across. He adds so much to the spirit of the team.

“We know if we get the ball to him there’s a high chance that he’ll be able to create something or threaten a defence so much that they’ll have to do something different to stop him. It’s great as a 10 to play outside him.

“Our relationship happened quite quickly and naturally. We get on really well off the field and have a laugh, but then we both understand each other well on the field.

“For me it’s simple – I just give the ball to Virimi. It’s easy. The more we have played together and trained together, the more the relationship has grown.

“Whether it’s a chip over the top, like the semi-final, or a miss pass, he backs me to put it in the right place if he gets into the right place.”

European Professional Club Rugby confirmed on Thursday morning that neither Exeter nor Racing have returned any positive coronavirus tests this week, meaning the final has the green light to proceed following the French club’s scare last week when nine employees tested positive.


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