The bad news is lock Caderyn Neville is expected to miss the start of a relaunched Super Rugby season in July after having ankle surgery in during the shutdown.
The good news is his first six games for his new club made such a good impression that he's on the ACT Brumbies' radar for a contract extension to stay in the capital beyond this year.
Neville has been ruled out for at least the first two or three weeks of the new season, which is expected to start on July 3 pending a broadcast agreement with Fox Sports and finalisation of a competition structure.
Flying fullback Tom Banks is also managing a foot problem, but the Brumbies have tinkered with his training load to make sure he's ready to burst back into action when the season gets the green light.
Rugby Australia officials are getting closer to completing their plans for a domestic competition, with the Western Force committed but the Japan Sunwolves' future still in the air.
The Brumbies will likely be able to play home games in Canberra, but stadium officials and the government are yet to receive Rugby Australia's coronavirus details and protocols.
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Neville will be missing from the first few games, which will give Nick Frost or Blake Enever a chance to link with Murray Douglas and Darcy Swain in the second row.
Journeyman Neville's arrival in Canberra this gave the Brumbies much-needed lock experience and he looked right at home in the Brumbies' fast start to the year.
"Caderyn was great, but he just had a clean up on his ankle. We were starting to have conversations with Caderyn before the virus hit about his future at the club," said Brumbies coach Dan McKellar. So it's a minor setback for him, it's not like he'll be out for 12 months. It will be a couple of months, but he'll be back.
"Banksy has an issue with his foot. We'll rehab him over the next few weeks, we just need to manage it well."
The Brumbies progressed to training in groups of 20 this week, with players itching for a chance to get back into full-contact sessions and games nine weeks after their last match.
"It's been going good so far. The boys are in bigger groups, we're slowly drip-feeding in rugby content of what we've been trying to work on. It's been exciting," said back-rower Pete Samu.
"When we heard the [NRL] was kicking off, I'm sure it was helping us to get back on the field as well. We've been training in pairs during the COVID period. Getting back into things we were a bit rusty and fitness levels a bit down, but the skill level was still there."
Meanwhile, Rugby Australia are weighing up whether to implement any of World Rugby's 10 optional temporary law amendments designed to help reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission, in their upcoming domestic Super Rugby competition.
World Rugby's executive committee has approved the optional law trials which cover scrum, tackle, ruck and maul situations
The trials, underpinned by World Health Organisation guidance, were considered by a specialist Law Review Group consisting of coaches, players, match officials, medics and law specialists following the detailed analysis of 60 matches.
Unions can apply to implement one or more of the temporary law amendments as domestic trials in line with the world governing body's return to play guidance.
The NRC would normally be the Australian competition used to trial changes.
But with the backlog of fixtures and delays caused by the coronavirus pandemic, it is unlikely to go ahead this year.
RA will have more discussions about which, if any, of the World Rugby recommendations may be implemented for their Super Rugby tournament once the proposed competition is approved by their broadcast partner Fox Sports.
They would also need to get the approval of SANZAAR, the organisation which runs Super Rugby. It is considered unlikely that SANZAAR would object to changes for a domestic tournament.
The four Australian Super Rugby sides plus the Western Force will participate in the competition, which has been provisionally pencilled in for July 3 to September 19, pending broadcasting approval.
Japan's Sunwolves were also being considered for inclusion, but confirmation that they are unable to participate is expected soon.
In addition to the on-field law trials, a number of hygiene measures are recommended for playing and training.
These include mandatory hand and face sanitisation before and after the match and regular sanitisation of the match ball.
There would be single-use water bottles, kit changing at halftime, a ban on huddles and celebrations, while spitting and nose clearance is also discouraged.
- with AAP