The GAA has pushed back inter-county training for elite GAA teams to next month at the earliest, having originally been scheduled for January 15th.

The decision has been taken in line with where much of public health and Government thinking seems to be with a decision on schools being seen as likely for the same time frame as early as tomorrow.

GAA Director-General Tom Ryan has written to all County Secretaries today outlining the thinking behind the move and stressing again the importance of adhering to the rules.

All club activity is already suspended and the only activity permitted at GAA grounds is for walkways where social distancing is possible as part of the Ireland Lights Up programme.

“As you are aware the current Level 5 restrictions in the South will run until January 31st which point the GAA will review the current situation and any further advice in this context will be provided,” the letter states.

“It is important to note that outdoor gatherings on GAA property are not permitted – the only current exemption to this is for walkways (which may stay open for use by the community with social distancing in place) and for clubs registered for the ‘Ireland Lights Up’ walking initiative.”

“I fully appreciate the frustrations these additional restrictions may place on our inter-county players and management teams.”

“However, the safety of everyone in the game and indeed the broader community has to be our primary focus.”

“It has never been more important for our players, coaches and officials to follow both the Government guidelines and our own provisions around training.”

It is expected that Ladies Football and Camogie will follow a similar path as has been the case in the overall gaelic games response to the lockdown and the pandemic.

 

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